Just a point of clarification: I didn't mean a series OR a blog retreat, I meant both! However, I'm gathering that a whole weekend is more than most of you can manage, so what do you say we culminate with one two-hour "party". I've listed some dates here for you to choose from so I'll know when the most people are available. Choosing a date doesn't commit you to being there, just so you know.
Friday, August 3 4:00-6:00 p.m. Central U.S. time
Saturday, August 4 8:00-10:00 a.m. Central U.S. Time
Friday, August 10 4:00-6:00 p.m. Central U.S. Time
Saturday, August 11 8:00-10:00 a.m. Central U.S. Time
Friday, August 24 8:00 - 10:00 a.m. Central U.S. Time
Saturday, August 25 8:00-10:00 a.m. Central U.S. TIme
As for those two gorgeous women who appeared in yesterday's picture: that's our own SARAH ELIZABETH and NICOLE. Nicole and her family were on a road trip in June and they stayed at one point just about two hours from where Sarah Elizabeth lives. They were able to meet up IN PERSON! How cool is that?
I have another announcement as well: our own KATIE has won first place ($1000!) in an essay contest. Seriously. I'm thinking she needs an inbox full of congratulations. Way to GO, Katie!
If there's any other exciting news you'd like for me to share on our blog, please feel free to email me and I'll get it on here. You can always share news in a comment, of course, but not everybody reads all the comments, so BIG news definitely needs to be mentioned in the post.
Okay, to begin our series on prayer, I'd like to start by having you share your biggset issues with trying to talk to God. Is it a matter of having or making the time? Not having a private space to really go deep? Not actually knowing how to start or maintain the conversation? Feeling too distant from God to even begin? Anything else? Be as honest as you always are. We're not a judging community, and if you have an issue it's safe to say somebody else has that same one. Knowing exactly what you're struggling with will help me shape our series. If you have ways of praying that really work for you, save those for when I call for them -- and I definitely will.
I'd also love for you, in your next quiet time, to carefully consider this verse as a prayer.
"He (Jesus) was praying in a certain place, and after he had finished, one of his disciples said to him, 'Lord, teach us to pray.'"
Luke 11:1 (NRSV)
We'll chat about that in our next post -- on Monday.
Now I'm going to do something I almost never do -- I'm recommending a song to you. It's just something you might want to download and listen to as we enter this time together. It's not a requirement -- you'll still get a great deal out of the series if you don't. But the more I listen to it, the more I think of you all. The song?
"Deep Calling Deep" by Margaret Becker
I found it on the album Very Best of Margaret Becker, so obviously it's on an earlier one as well.
We're being called to prayer, Ladies. I'm honored to be answering that call with you.