5 Benefits from Attending Retreats (FFF – 2011)
Do believe that attending work retreats has value? Is it more effort to get ready to leave than it is worth? Blessings can abound from attending work retreats. I discovered 5 benefits this past week as I had to attend two retreats for work. With which of these can you identify? What would you add?
- Connection. Time away from the regular day-to-day responsibilities of work and home gave me time to connect with myself, God and others. (a) Because of the lack of many responsibilities, it was a relaxing time for my body and soul. I was able to spend time reflecting on my work goals. (b) I enjoyed the opportunity to worship God several times a day through corporate and individual worship. I learned three new songs that I hope we sing at Women’s Retreat June 2011. The songs are Our God, Rain Down, and One Thing Remains. (c) I enjoyed the time getting to know new friends and getting to know “old” friends better.
- Play. It was fun to relax, play, and not concentrate on work. All but two staff members from my workplace were at the first retreat. For one lunch/free time we drove to a nearby shop to buy fresh crab, French bread, and butter. I learned how to crack crab (messy). We picked up dessert at a local taffy shop. I never knew so many flavours existed. I shared my bags of licorice and raspberry lemonade taffy. We ended our time together walking along a black sand beach. I didn’t even know that we had black sand beaches in CA.
- Leadership. The leadership at the retreats was so approachable. They listened to and answered our questions in group and individual settings. They encouraged us through the sharing of their own experiences, through the content of the “lectures” and through prayer. They laughed and had fun with us too. I.e. We were sent off with the instructions to not talk to anyone for 30 minutes in order to just be still. As I passed this one leader he made rapid motions with his hands. I realized that he was “talking” to me but in a way that didn’t disobey the instructions.
- Networking. I was able to talk to many people, most of whom I didn’t know. People attended this retreat from the West Coast (of USA) and Hawaii and ranged in age from 24-80 something. I talked to people who had experiences I haven’t had yet and I learned how I can avoid them. And I heard workable solutions I can hack to fit my work challenges
- Resources. I talked to many folks about children’s ministry and what resources they’ve found to be useful. Here are a few of their ideas. (a) Many parents lack skills and knowledge on parenting well. This book, Growing Up Again – Second Edition: Parenting Ourselves, Parenting Our Children, gives parents age and developmentally appropriate advise. Plus the information will help parents heal some of their own developmental wounds. Go here for an overview of the stages. (b) Memorization when coupled with music is enhanced. For some good Scripture memory songs, check out the Seed family products. Go here to read a review on ministry-to-children.com about Seed Family worship products including their “unique packaging. Each package comes with two CDs inside. One CD is for you to keep, and the other is to give away to someone who would benefit from Seeds’ music.” (c) Church curriculum for children that will help them “know and cherish the infinite value of God” by giving them the Word. One study that was highly recommended is the 40 week study titled, How Majestic is Your Name. “This study presents the Hebrew names of God in the Old Testament and the names of Christ and the Holy Spirit in the New Testament. Each lesson encourages children to see and rejoice in the goodness and greatness of God as they explore the meaning of His glorious names.”
Leaving for a week means extra preparation ahead of time and extra work after returning home. But it is definitely worth the effort. This week’s post is in response to Friday’s Fave Five (FFF) sponsored by Living to Tell the Story. To link up your own gratitude post, go here.