Wednesday, February 25, 2015

I HEART...Christian Sisters

Everybody loves Wednesday, right?
The week's half over.  The weekend is on the way.
What's not to love?
Each Wednesday, I want to share something with you
that I absolutely love and can't live without!

Back last Spring, I got a call from Phyllis Richardson from the Regency congregation in Mobile, asking if I would be interested in speaking for their ladies' day in January 2015. Phyllis and I have known about each other for years. Phyllis is from Tallassee, and of course, Gerald and I now call Tallassee home. I wasn't raised here, but my daddy was. Lots of family connections. Phyllis attended Alabama Christian College (now Faulkner University) where she met her husband, who now serves on the board of directors. Of course, we have deep ties to Faulkner as well. Her younger brother, Mark, and I are friends and had done lots of theater together after I got out of college. In fact, she and I are Facebook friends, although I don't think we ever met face to face until Faulkner's benefit dinner back in October, after I had already accepted the speaking engagement.

Besides these connections, when she told me where she worshiped, I said, "I was born in Mobile!" As we talked more, she told me we would actually be having the retreat in Lucedale, Mississippi. Excitedly, I told her I had lived in Lucedale as a baby while my daddy preached at the Rocky Creek congregation. It all seemed to be coming together so nicely that I felt it was just meant to be.

Then she dropped the bombshell - we would be staying at Gulf Coast Bible Camp. Emphasis on camp. Woah! Wait! What?! At that point I had only been to camp once - when I was a toddler - and to that very camp. And I don't particularly remember loving it! I had instinctively avoided camp all through my youth and now I had unwittingly committed myself to it. There were all these connections and it seemed meant to be, right? Ahh, funny how life works.

Well - if I was going, I wasn't going alone. I recruited Jewell and Mama to go with me. And I'm so glad I did.

The theme was "When Life Gives You Scraps". On Friday night, I talked about Joseph and how he remained faithful although life seemed to deal him a bad hand, time after time. God used those scraps to weave together a beautiful tapestry that resulted in not only the saving of Joseph's family but the preservation of the Jewish nation.

During the first session Saturday, I talked about how we are not to conform to the world. We must set ourselves apart. In the second session, we talked about setting an example for the world, and we focused on Titus 2:7-8 which says, " all things showing thyself to be a pattern of good works; in doctrine showing integrity, reverence, incorruptibility, sound speech that cannot be condemned, that one who is an opponent may be ashamed, having nothing evil to say of you."

We enjoyed the most beautiful singing throughout the weekend!

Even though she was the only child tweenager, Jewell did so well! She is always friendly and never meets a stranger. She is just learning to knit so she took it with her and got quite a lot done on our trip.

We met so many wonderful Christian women that weekend. Isn't Christian sisterhood a wonderful bond!?! It's been 45 years since we lived in that area, but Mama remembered so many of these ladies and she really enjoyed reuniting with them. Even those we didn't know had become our friends by the end of the weekend.

I especially enjoyed getting to know my bunk mate, Sister Wanda Bridges. She is a relatively new Christian, but already has an incredible knowledge and command of scripture.  It was such a blessing to wake up to the sound of her thanking the Lord for the good night's rest and asking His blessing on our upcoming day.

I didn't take any pictures of the cabins, although I wish I had. Hurricanes Katrina and Ivan both wreaked havoc on the camp, so it was a totally different place from what it was when I was a child. We had heat and bathrooms in our cabin, so it wasn't that bad after all! 

The weekend was somewhat of a run-through for this summer.  In a moment of weakness (or love - but probably more weakness!) I agreed to go to camp with Jewell this summer. One winter night versus a week during the summer. Humm...What was I thinking?!!

I had a wonderful time meeting all the ladies from Regency, but I have to say that perhaps the best part of the weekend was getting to spend time alone with my two favorite ladies in the entire world. I'm so glad Phyllis called and even more glad I said yes!


I'm so glad you stopped by my neck of the woods!
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I wouldn't want you to miss one crazy thing...

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