All joking aside, this 2 day experience impacted me greatly. It's amazing how much God has to say to us when we take the time to get away and listen for His voice. When no words are spoken and distractions are minimal it's amazing how the voice of God speaks profoundly into the silent stillness of our lives. And speak He did! I have pages and pages of reflections that I recorded in my journal. God met with me to confirm His calling upon my life and to sharpen that calling so that I am more about His business than my own. As I worshiped frequently, read Scripture, prayed and observed His beauty through nature the main message that God kept speaking into the silence was basically, "Len, your life and ministry will become what it can be if you focus more of your energy on the Lord of the work and not merely the on work of the Lord." I came away from this experience hungrier for Christ and more appreciative of His astounding grace. I believe the rest of my Beeson Pastor brothers felt the same.
Since a number of people from the Stroudsburg Wesleyan Church, where I serve as senior pastor, check out this blog I wanted to include a prayer that I believe I was inspired by God to write on their behalf. Here it is: "Lord, pour out Your Spirit upon them in a way that is undeniably Your doing. May their corporate times of worship, fellowship, study, and service become habits that draw them deeper into Your love. Protect them from fear, discouragement, apathy and pride while You work within their hearts to heal their wounds and hold their hands to help them live life to the absolute full." I love you, SWC!
Here are some more pictures from the monastery that I think you'll enjoy, interspersed with some pics from Sam's first birthday on August 3.