“A 48 hr Personal Growth Experience”

This past weekend I attended a retreat called “A 48hr Personal Growth Experience”. It was a pilot retreat run by my good friend Francie Brown and the ministry she does with her husband called LOOK INSIDE. I’ve done other retreats with Francie so I was really excited about this one. 

As always, the timing was all God. This past month I have been floundering. New schedules, new routines. I fell off my diet wagon. I have felt like everything needed over-hauling but I had no direction or purpose. Why am I doing this?? So, the thought of going to a retreat where I might get a download of my “call” and “purpose” sounded great. 

As always, I ended up being surprised. Instead of looking for some outside source to give me direction, what we ended up doing was taking a really close look at what we already had in our lives. Let’s look at our incentives for change. Let’s look at the tools we have used in the past and that we are using right now. Let’s solidify our vision, based on what we already hope and dream about. Let’s look at our connections we already have in life and assess the health of those connections. And then, let’s figure out how to use the tools that are readily available to come up with an action plan that supports healthy connections and pursuing our vision. 

Very simple. But profound as we looked at each aspect of our life and made judgement on whether these things were good, bad, redeemable? Let’s figure out how to make the good better, contain the bad so it isn’t draining us, and either walk away from or redeem the mediocre in hopes of turning it into good. 

I walked away feeling hope. And also feeling like I had tangible steps I could make towards pursuing my vision. 

I’m going to share my Vision with you. But, first, a caveat. My vision is kind of like envisioning Heaven. This is perfection. This is what the ideal abundant life would look like. I am under no illusion that I am going to accomplish this vision perfectly or ever get as close to it as I wish. But, it’s the path I want to be on. The direction I want to be heading. 

My vision is in three parts. Relational: hopes and dreams for my relationships. Tangible: hopes and dreams for my circumstances and environment. God: my desires for my relationship with God. 

Here goes. 

I want my relationships to be authentic, mutual, and vulnerable. I want to grow my community. I want health and healing in my relationships. 

I want to thrive instead of survive. I want tangible plans for our finances and home/family management. I want to serve others with my gifts and talents. I want to have a healthy body/mind/emotions. 

I want to walk in deeper understanding of God’s love and grace. I want to make God the true center of my life and be purposeful about being in his presence. 

So, that all sounds really lofty. But in reality, what it looks like is making a TO DO list. Revamping my old home management systems. Inviting friends over for supper. Buying a book. Setting a timer on my FB so I don’t waste all my time in a mediocre environment. Just a bunch of small, doable steps. 

I’m feeling hopeful and thankful, ready to go conquer the world, one small step at a time. 

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