Come Away {the retreat} – Carving Out Time With Jesus

Is your relationship with Jesus all that you desire it to be?

Would you like to feel closer to Him? To trust Him more? To feel His peace in your heart?

 

You can! The thing is, you have to make the choice to feel closer to Him…to trust Him more…to feel His peace. It is all up to you.

Jesus has already done what is necessary to establish a warm, tender, intimate relationship with you. He initiated it, now you must walk into it. It will not happen by chance, I promise.

A close and intimate walk with Christ requires intentional relationship building efforts on your part. While I do not claim to have cornered the market on this, I do believe that I have learned a thing or three in my 52 years that I would love to share with a few women who are hungry for more of Jesus.

If you are a woman who longs for more of Jesus…more of His love, more of His presence, more of His peace, more of His joy….I invite you to join me September 15-17, 2017 at Come Away {the retreat}.

 

 

Come Away Pinterest

 

At Come Away we will spend the weekend engaged in worship, the Scriptures, prayer, and tuning our hearts to the frequency of Jesus’ heart. Come Away {the retreat} will offer 7 ladies the opportunity to tuck away in a beautiful cabin in the north Georgia mountains and carve out time for Jesus. There will be three sessions of worship and Bible study, as well as ample private time and space for personal Jesus time. We will seek to lay down the distractions of daily life and social media and turn our gaze toward Christ.

A glance at the weekend:

FRIDAY – September 15th

 

Arrival by 4pm

Check in and settle in

Dinner

Session #1 – worship and teaching

Evening Assignments and Fellowship

 

SATURDAY – September 16th

 

Breakfast

Session #2 – worship and teaching

Focused prayer time (corporate and individual)

Lunch

 

Afternoon at leisure

 

Tasting Grace style dinner

Session #3 – worship and teaching

Evening Assignments and Fellowship

 

SUNDAY – September 17th

 

Breakfast

Final prayer time

Commissioning

Departures by 9am

 

Optional: Attend church at 11am with Leah at Vertical Church in Blairsville

 

NOTE: Schedule is subject to a tweak or two

 

What You Need to Know:

 

DATES:  September 15-17, 2016

 

LOCATION: Blue Ridge, Georgia – about an hour and a half drive north of Atlanta

 

ACCOMMODATIONS: Tippy Canoe cabin is a lodge-style lake home on Lake Blue Ridge that features traditional mountain furnishings. The kitchen is equipped with both modern appliances and functional antique appliances. Comfortable living spaces are situated throughout the homes three floors, one of them containing a home theater. Fireplaces include a wood burning and a gas burning fireplace, as well as an outside fire ring. All bedrooms for attendees are on the 2nd and 3rd floors of the cabin.

There are six bunk-style (twin on top, full on bottom) beds on the 2nd and 3rd floors of the cabin and one private queen room on the 2nd floor. Two full and one half baths round out the sleeping spaces.

 

COSTS: accommodations, all sessions and material, and all meals are included in the price.

Bunk-style beds – $300 per person

One private queen room – $350

 

REGISTRATION:

I am seeking women who are serious about developing an intimate relationship with Jesus, therefore, registration will require a bit more of a commitment than simply paying the fee.

  1. Beginning now, be willing to commit to pray over your time at Come Away, asking the Lord to give you a prepared heart for what He desires to do that weekend.
  2. In a letter or email, tell me your story (where you have been and where you are now spiritually) and why you desire to attend Come Away. I will need to have this piece of the registration in my hands before you pay your fee. Do not send money with your letter. I will prompt you to register and pay your fee once I receive your letter. My email address is info@leahadams.org and my mailing address is PO Box 113, Blairsville, GA 30514.
  3. Registration will be first come, first served.
  4. Because of the intimate nature of the retreat, we will not be able to accommodate children or babies.

 

Registration will officially open for fee payment on June 5th, but you may send your story letters or emails now. When registration opens on June 5th, I will accept checks, Paypal (info@leahadams.org) or credit cards (via telephone).

Friend, I want you to know the peace and joy that comes from a close and abiding walk with Christ. Come Away!

 

Sharing is caring! There are images for a few different social media platforms for your sharing pleasure. Thank you for sharing!

 

Facebook

Come Away retreat

Instagram

Come Away IG

 

QUESTIONS? Email me at info@leahadams.org.

The World Celebrates The Deaths of the Two Witnesses

Ladies, I hope you are praying about joining me in September for the Come Away {retreat for women}. It will be a sweet time of intimacy with Jesus in the mountains of North Georgia. Click HERE or see the link in the side bar of my website to learn more.

 

We are back today to visit a bit more with the two witnesses of Revelation 11. We started last week by looking at the powers that God gives them during their tenure on earth. Today we move on through the chapter and learn about what happens to them as a result of their prophesying.

 

The World Celebrates the Death of the Two Witnesses

 

 

 

Vignette #2 ~ The Death of the Two Witnesses

Here is the passage that describes their deaths.

7 And when they have finished their testimony, the beast that rises from the bottomless pit will make war on them and conquer them and kill them,

8 and their dead bodies will lie in the street of the great city that symbolically is called Sodom and Egypt, where their Lord was crucified.

9 For three and a half days some from the peoples and tribes and languages and nations will gaze at their dead bodies and refuse to let them be placed in a tomb,

10 and those who dwell on the earth will rejoice over them and make merry and exchange presents, because these two prophets had been a torment to those who dwell on the earth.

 

As a result of their testimony during the 3 ½ years they are on earth, they are killed by ‘the beast that rises from the bottomless pit’. A great question here would be ‘who is the beast?’. We are going to learn much more about this person in coming lessons, but scholars generally agree that this is antichrist. These two witnesses likely preach against antichrist and he is not happy about it, so he kills them.

Instead of being buried immediately, the bodies of these two witnesses lie in the streets of Jerusalem for 3 ½ days. The people of the world throw a big ole party to celebrate their deaths. The Scripture tells us that people exchange gifts to mark the deaths of the two who have tormented them for 3 ½ years. It is hard to imagine such a celebration over the deaths of two people, but it will happen.

 

Vignette #3 ~ The Resurrection of the Two Witnesses

11 But after the three and a half days a breath of life from God entered them, and they stood up on their feet, and great fear fell on those who saw them.

12 Then they heard a loud voice from heaven saying to them, “Come up here!” And they went up to heaven in a cloud, and their enemies watched them.

After 3 ½ days of a worldwide celebration of the deaths of these two guys, God says, ‘Enough’ and causes them to be resurrected from the dead. The celebration by the world turns to great fear. Suddenly, as the world watches, the two living witnesses are called to heaven and taken up in a cloud. As you might imagine this leads to….

 

Vignette #4 ~ The World Situation

13 And at that hour there was a great earthquake, and a tenth of the city fell. Seven thousand people were killed in the earthquake, and the rest were terrified and gave glory to the God of heaven.

14 The second woe has passed; behold, the third woe is soon to come.

In the same hour that God calls these two witnesses to heaven, there is a great earthquake that seems to be centered in the city of Jerusalem. One tenth of the city is destroyed and seven thousand people are killed. Up to now the people in the world have done everything but give glory to God. Now, it seems this event has, at the very least, opened their eyes to the power and majesty of God.

This vignette closes by telling us that Woe #2 (the 6th trumpet) is now finished and the third, and final, woe is to come. Next week we will finish our study of Revelation 11. I hope you will join me then.

SDG/FCA!!

Note: This post contains affiliate links.

 

Whether one agrees with Jenkins and LaHaye’s timing and interpretations of the events of the end times or not, The Left Behind Series is a wonderful collection of end times fiction that makes for riveting reading. Check it out.

Does Your Life Flow Inward or Outward?

I don’t know about you, but for me, it is so easy to fall into the world’s line of thinking.

 

I got mine, you get yours.

 

It’s all about me.

 

What’s in it for me?

 

Problem is, for a Christian, this way of thinking is completely contrary to what Jesus taught. It is also contrary to what I had modeled for me growing up. Although I never fully realized the scope of what my parents did for others until they were gone, I knew they were generous toward those who were in need…both in the body of Christ and outside of it.

 

 

Does Your Life Flow Inward or Outward

 

 

At my Daddy’s funeral, my Mother, Sister, and I greeted hundreds who came to pay their respects. Over and over people told us how my Daddy had helped them.

He paid my house payment when I was about to lose my home.

 

He came to my appliance store, bought a refrigerator, and told me where to deliver it. But he said that I was not to tell the recipients who provided it.

 

When my electricity was about to be cut off, he paid my bill.

 

He bailed me out of jail when I made a poor choice.

Then, when my Mother died, many shared similar stories of her love and generosity.

These testimonies, and so many more, were evidence of Romans 12:13 in the life of my parents.

 

Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality.

I love the reminder offered by John MacArthur in his commentary on the book of Romans.

 

The flow of the supernatural life is outward, not inward.

 

It is true. The life modeled after Jesus is not a life of selfish ambition, but one of self-less sacrifice and offering.

Billy Graham said:

 

The smallest package I ever saw was a man wrapped up wholly in himself.

 

As I think about the life that Jesus lived, I see a life of service and hospitality to others:

He healed

He restored life

He taught

He loved

He wept

He ate with the outcast

He never heaped shame on those who sought Him out

He took my place on the cross and paid the fine for my sin

 

So, really, how can I justify being selfish and self-serving? Everything I have…my body, my money, my talents, my time, my home, everything…..is on loan to me from God. None of it is really mine, so if the Jesus-life tells me to be generous in giving and hospitable to others, how can I do otherwise?

The question then becomes whether the flow of my life is outward or inward. It is the question for your life, as well.

Outward or Inward?

 

One of the ways I seek to help women develop that outward flowing life is to encourage them to walk more intimately with Christ. September 15-17, 2017 the Come Away retreat for women will offer ladies an opportunity to lean into Jesus in a beautiful, relaxed setting. In our world of constant stimulation and social media, one must be intentional in their pursuit of Christ. Come Away with Jesus for a weekend! Click HERE to learn more.

 

SDG/FCA!!

NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.

Super Heroes of The Tribulation – The Two Witnesses

Before we get into our Revelation lesson, I  wanted to remind you about the Come Away retreat for women that I will be hosting in September. It will be a time of intimacy with Jesus for a handful of women. I would love for you to be one of those women. Click HERE to learn more about the retreat.

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Hello there! Are you a fan of super heroes? You know…Power Rangers, Super Man, Batman, Wonder Woman…..characters that appear human but have amazing, other-worldly powers that are wielded to accomplish good.

When I was child my sister and I loved to watch Wonder Woman. Lynda Carter played a character that was beautiful and possessed amazing powers. One minute she would be an ordinary woman, the next she would spin around and around like an ice skater and in a burst of light she became Wonder Woman. She could run faster than anyone, jump higher than everyone, and those wrist bands and her magic lasso! Ah, I wanted a set of those so badly. She was the ultimate super hero in my 13-year old mind.

 

Super Heroes of the Tribulation

 

 

Did you know there are a couple of guys that will appear during the tribulation at the end of time who are a little bit like super heroes? We began our look at them in this post, and determined that it is impossible at this point to know exactly their identity. Today, let’s look on into Revelation 11 to discover the scoop on these two Tribulation Super Heroes.

 

4 These are the two olive trees and the two lampstands that stand before the Lord of the earth.

5 And if anyone would harm them, fire pours from their mouth and consumes their foes. If anyone would harm them, this is how he is doomed to be killed.

6 They have the power to shut the sky, that no rain may fall during the days of their prophesying, and they have power over the waters to turn them into blood and to strike the earth with every kind of plague, as often as they desire.

 

7 And when they have finished their testimony, the beast that rises from the bottomless pit will make war on them and conquer them and kill them,

8 and their dead bodies will lie in the street of the great city that symbolically is called Sodom and Egypt, where their Lord was crucified.

9 For three and a half days some from the peoples and tribes and languages and nations will gaze at their dead bodies and refuse to let them be placed in a tomb,

10 and those who dwell on the earth will rejoice over them and make merry and exchange presents, because these two prophets had been a torment to those who dwell on the earth.

 

11 But after the three and a half days a breath of life from God entered them, and they stood up on their feet, and great fear fell on those who saw them.

12 Then they heard a loud voice from heaven saying to them, “Come up here!” And they went up to heaven in a cloud, and their enemies watched them.

 

13 And at that hour there was a great earthquake, and a tenth of the city fell. Seven thousand people were killed in the earthquake, and the rest were terrified and gave glory to the God of heaven.

14 The second woe has passed; behold, the third woe is soon to come.

 

In this passage we have four vignettes that we need to examine. This may take a couple of weeks, so settle in.

 

Vignette #1 – Who Are These Witnesses and What Powers Do They Possess

Vignette #2 – The Death of the Two Witnesses

Vignette #3 – The Resurrection of the Two Witnesses

Vignette #4 – The World Situation

 

Vignette #1.

Scripture makes it clear that these two men serve at the pleasure of God when we are told they stand before the Lord of the earth. The mention of olive trees, as well as the candlesticks, points to their nationality being Jewish. Scripture references to olive trees or branches almost always signify the Jewish nation. If you have studied the Old Testament tabernacle you will know that one of the key pieces of furniture was a golden candlestick that provided light for the Holy Place and pointed forward to Jesus being the Light of the World.

The sole purpose of these two witnesses on earth during this troubled time in history is to prophesy about the return of Christ to the earth in a final attempt to turn the hearts of men to God. The protection of God rests on these two men, and anyone who attempts to harm them is incinerated by fire that comes from their mouths. Gives a whole new meaning to ‘ash in a flash’!

God has given them the power to keep the rain from falling, to turn the waters to blood, and to strike the earth with all manner of plagues. This is reminiscent of the plagues that Moses called down onto the Egyptians in the book of Exodus when Pharaoh refused to allow the Israelites to leave Egypt. Horrors designed to turn the heart toward God or God’s people.

Let’s stop here and return next week to visit the other three vignettes that surround the presence of the two witnesses on earth.

SDG/FCA!!

NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.

When Life Looks Different Than What You Had Planned

Every week I am privileged to spend an hour or so of private time with my pastor’s sweet wife, Becca. We talk, we share, we cry, we pray, we simply do life together. She is young enough to be my daughter, and I love her as if she were. She is a beautiful, honest, all-out-crazy-for-Jesus young woman. Her heart is very much for seeing those who do not know Jesus come to Him, and she is a blessing to me in a dozen different ways.

Recently we were talking about how God’s plans often end up looking very different from the plans that we make for our life. I shared with her how true that is for me, especially in regard to ministry.

 

When Life Looks Different Than What you Had Planned

 

I told her that when the Lord called me into ministry in 2007, He made it so clear that I was to speak and teach God’s Word. He confirmed it through several avenues, and so I stepped boldly into that calling. To be very transparent, I secretly hoped I would be the next Christian teacher ‘star’….’the next Beth Moore’, as so many told me at my speaking engagements. I know….ten years into this wild ministry ride, I see how ridiculous and prideful that sounds, but I’m just being honest with you.

For about seven years all of my dreams seemed to be on track. I spoke at ladies events all over the southeast. I was blessed to write and publish four books. Ministry life was good and going according to ‘my plans’. I held on tightly to a quote I read on a flip calendar somewhere. It said something like this: It can take ten years to be an ‘overnight sensation’.

As Becca and I talked, I shared with her that when my ministry began to change, at first I was not happy with God about it. I saw other speakers going on to bigger and better things, while God seemed to be drawing down my ministry. Oh, He was not pulling me out of ministry. Rather, He was changing what ministry looked like for me. Instead of the big stage, it was more one-on-one and small group ministry. Instead of preparing messages to be delivered to a few hundred women, I was pulling together ingredients for making biscuits and pound cakes and chicken and dressing. Instead of spending time writing more books, I am spending face-to-face and shoulder-to-shoulder time loving on, mentoring, and doing life with women. And you know what, now I love it and I cannot imagine doing anything else.

 

God uses broken things

 

 

I had a choice about how I would respond when God changed up ministry. I could have been angry with Him and pouted. (yeah, that would have worked out well!) I could have been jealous over the speaking opportunities and book contracts that other people received. (hmmm, that would have been pretty!) Instead I bent my knee to God’s plan and have found incredible peace and satisfaction in ministry. Don’t misunderstand me, there were fleeting moments of ‘why, God?’ questions and green-with-envy jealousy, but those were only for a moment. I knew that God sees the big picture, and whatever He ordains for me is for my good and for His glory. I realized that to grasp for anything else is relational suicide as far as my relationship with God goes.

Sometime after Becca and I shared that conversation I received a text from her that made my heart so full of love for her and gratitude to God for how He is allowing me to serve His kingdom.

I love you so much, Leah. I’m so, so, so, so thankful God didn’t make you the ‘next Beth Moore” because our time on the porch feels like the closest thing to Heaven on earth to me. I am so glad you’re in my life. Thank you.

I do not always do life and ministry perfectly, but I love that He trusts me with it at all. Me! A woman who has made her share of mistakes and oopsies in life, but who falls so heavily on the grace and mercy of Jesus.

Part of the ‘new’ look for ministry for me is the upcoming Come Away retreat that I am hosting in September. I’d love for you to pray about attending.

 

Come Away Retreat

 

Come Away will be an intimate time of leaning into Jesus through worship, Scripture study, and prayer. We will set aside tweets and posts and hashtags in order to hear from Jesus about how crazy He is over us. The retreat will be held September 15-17, 2017. Pop over HERE to learn more details.

SDG/FCA!!

NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.

Come Away {a retreat for women} ~ Finding Intimacy With Jesus

To say that I grew up in a day when life was more simple would be an astounding understatement. When I picture the contrast of life in 1979 (I was 15) and 2017 it is almost as if I am picturing two different planets.

A typical day in my 15-year-old life would have included waking up, eating breakfast with my family, going to school where the highlight of the day was walking around the hall during breaks and eyeing the cute boys (yep, I married one of them.) After school there was band practice on Tuesday and Thursday nights and a football game on Friday nights. Sometimes I had a date for Saturday night. I worked at the local pharmacy on Saturdays and Sunday afternoons. Sunday morning and Sunday evening found me in church where the majority of my friends could also be found.

Talking on the telephone meant having a conversation via a phone that was * gasp * attached to the wall by a very long cord that we stretched farther than it should have been so that we could talk in private in our bedroom. We also communicated with our friends via handwritten notes that got passed during class. Awkward!

I read a lot of books and kept a handwritten diary. I did not lay eyes on a computer until my first year of pharmacy school (1984). A mobile phone was not even on the landscape of my mind until 1991, and I had certainly never heard of texting, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, or Snapchat.

Life was incredibly simple for me. Today it is less so for the majority of people I know, and I believe that is one reason why most of us have a hard time developing an intimate relationship with Jesus. We simply have too much pulling at us.

Mobile devices

Computers

Social media

Kids in every sport under the sun

Activities, activities, activities.

No time to slow down and simply be with Jesus.

I do not think it takes a degreed theologian to see that Satan has found an effective way to keep us from having an intimate relationship with Christ by keeping us busy…focused on things that have little or no eternal value.

Which means that if you and I really want an intimate relationship with Jesus we must be the ones to throw up a STOP sign and say, “Enough”.

 

Come Away Retreat

 

Is your relationship with Jesus important enough to prompt you to set aside a couple of days to COME AWAY with Him? You see, you will have to be intentional in the pursuit of an intimate relationship with Jesus. You must decide that there is nothing more important to you than that relationship, and you will have to carve out time to meet with Him and allow Him to speak into your heart.

Last week in THIS POST I shared a teeny bit of information about the upcoming Come Away retreat on which the Lord and I are working. You were prompted to consider whether you desire a more intimate relationship with Christ. I told you this retreat would be a time of worship, Bible study, prayer, and time alone with Jesus. I asked you to pray about attending Come Away. I was blessed by the response from many women. Come Away 2017 will offer 7 ladies the opportunity to do just that. May I share with you a few more details about the retreat?

 

September 15th-17th will find 7 ladies joining me to spend the weekend together in a beautiful, rustic log cabin on Lake Blue Ridge in Blue Ridge, Georgia. There will be three sessions of worship and Scripture teaching during the weekend, as well as ample time and space, both inside the cabin and outside around the lake, for private reflection and prayer. As we cook and share meals together, we will pray for and encourage one another to pursue Jesus like never before.

At Come Away we will seek to lay aside mobile devices, social media and other distractions in order to fix our gaze on Jesus, Our Beloved. My prayer is that each woman will leave the retreat knowing that she is perfectly safe, deeply loved, and completely accepted by Jesus.

The retreat price will include your accommodations, food, materials, and all sessions. You will only need to bring your Bible, writing instruments, personal items, and a heart that longs to meet Jesus.

Prices:

bunk style accommodation ~ $300

one private room accommodation ~ $350

There are six bunk-style (twin on top, full on bottom) beds on the 2nd and 3rd floors of the cabin and one private queen room on the 2nd floor.

You may pay the entire fee at one time, or in two installments of 50% each, but all fees must be paid by September 1st. In case you need to cancel your attendance at the retreat, fees are refundable until August 15th, with the exception of $75.

 

Because I am seeking women who are serious about an intimate relationship with Jesus, registration requirements will be a bit unique.

  1. Beginning now, be willing to commit to pray over your time at Come Away, asking the Lord to give you a prepared heart for what He desires to do that weekend.
  2. In a letter or email, tell me your story (where you have been and where you are now spiritually) and why you desire to attend Come Away. I will need to have this piece of the registration in my hands before you pay your fee. Do not send money with your letter. I will prompt you to register and pay your fee once I receive your letter. My email address is info@leahadams.org and my mailing address is PO Box 113, Blairsville, GA 30514.
  3. Registration will be first come, first served.

 

Registration will officially open for fee payment on June 5th, but you may begin sending me your letter or email now.

I am praying for you and I hope you will join me in September. For retreat schedule and more information, please see THIS POST.

SDG/FCA!!

This post contains affiliate links!

What To Do When Trials and Pain Are Your Constant Companions

What does your prayer list/journal look like? If it is anything like mine, it is filled with a whole passel of painful things as well as random praises sprinkled throughout. Let me give you a sampling of the things over which I am currently praying:

A marriage that has had the tarnation beat out of it….but the couple has decided to try one more time and work it out

An inoperable brain tumor in a loved one

An overwhelmed single mom of a handful of kids

A family with several members who need Jesus

An alcoholic who has no interest in Jesus or in life

New community Bible study groups beginning at our church (Yay!)

An upcoming retreat…that I am organizing and speaking (so humbled that God allows me to do this)

My kids and my nephews

Our divided and angry country

A beautiful 20-something who is battling an eating disorder

My new church (How blessed we are to have it!)

A family whose 50-something dad is battling an aggressive form of dementia

A precious elderly saint who is going blind while dealing with a husband with dementia

A friend in the battle of their life with alcohol

And SO MUCH MORE!!!

 

When Trials and Pain Are Your Constant Companions

 

 

Even with the good things sprinkled in, there are some days I can hardly open my journal without crying. There is so much hurt in our world, so much pain, so much mess. How can I make a difference? How do I even process it all? Some days all I can do is put my head down on the table and cry out, “Jesus, please help.”

Into all of it comes Romans 12:12:

 

Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.

I have to remind myself that because of Jesus, there is hope for every situation. It is always too soon to give up on Jesus and the work that He longs to do in the lives of other people, and in my life. I have a flip calendar in my downstairs bathroom and one of the pages says, “I have hope and I’m not afraid to use it.” I love that. People, we must hold onto the hope of new life and healing and strength and provision that Jesus can offer. We must.

We also must be patient in trials and tribulation. Oh yeah, I want life to be easy, but the reality is that it usually is NOT. I want hurt and pain and trials to pass quickly….like a day off work…zoom, and it is over. Problem is sometimes God needs some time to work some junk out of us and trials are the only way it will happen. I know you are glad you stopped in and read this post today! We must be patient as we go through trials, remembering that God has allowed that trial for some reason. We must trust that He will make it pass. It may pass like a kidney stone, but it will pass.

Finally, we must be constant in prayer. It is so important to stay in relationship and communication with God. In the good times and the bad, we need to have that ongoing dialogue with Him. He wants to hear from us. We need to hear from Him. So, friends, let us

Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.

SDG/FCA!

NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.

When Your Heart Longs for More Jesus….Come Away

My sister and I spent a lot of time with our paternal grandparents when we were children. Many Saturday nights found us spending the night at their home while our parents went out to dinner with friends. It was a Saturday night ritual that gave me wonderful memories of love and laughter.

Because of the time I spent with my grandparents, I had a window into their lives and faith. My Grandma, especially, had a deep and abiding faith in Jesus. It was not a faith that was easy-come, easy-go. No, she had seen some heartache and trouble in her life and had found Jesus to be faithfully present through it. As I circled around her life, I got the sense that Jesus was her best friend and that she really, really trusted Him. She spoke of Him in an easy, familiar way that caused me to wonder how exactly one would go about having Jesus as a best friend and confidante’.  It would be a few decades before I would understand how to have with a full-on, intimate relationship with Jesus like that of my Grandma.

 

What about you?

Is Jesus your best friend?

Do you trust Him completely with your life…with the life of your family…with your money…with your health?

Do you tell Him everything?

Are you willing to fling open your arms and say “here I am….I am yours…do with me as you will, even if it hurts”?

 

Once you have asked Jesus to come into your heart and forgive you of your sins, then you will be able to journey with me into this post. But, if you have not yet done that, you will never have an intimate relationship with Him. If you want to know more about why I believe in Jesus and made Him my best friend, please see THIS POST.

Today in our time together I am seeking to take you to a deeper place of intimacy that comes after you have established that saving relationship with Christ. A place of complete trust in Him….more trust than you have ever placed in any human. A place of obedient surrender to His desires for your life.

 

Come Away Post 1

 

You see, I’m convinced that an astounding number of Christians do not have that intimate, best-friend-in-the-entire-world relationship with Jesus. They have a saving relationship with Him, but that is where it stops, and that is precisely where I was about 20 years ago. I had asked Jesus to come into my heart, forgive me of my sins, and one day when I died, take me to live with Him in heaven. But, I did not have an intimate friendship with Him and I wanted one. I wanted that deep, abiding trust in Christ that my Grandma had.

And I finally figured out how to get it.

Please do not misunderstand me. I do not have it all figured out when it comes to the Christian life. God teaches me something new almost every day. He points out things in my life that need to go and be replaced with His things. There are still many days that I am painfully aware of my lack of success at this Jesus-walk.

The results of my recent survey told me that women are struggling, y’all. Probably men, too, but my heart is women. We are struggling in our marriages, our jobs, our parenting, our choices, and in our view of who we are in Jesus. I believe that I have learned some things that Jesus would like for me to share with a few somebodies who are desperate to know Him better. A few women who want like crazy to experience Jesus as their very-best friend.

 

About six months ago the Lord began tugging on my heart-strings with the idea of an intimate retreat for women where the focus is spending time with Jesus in worship, prayer, Bible study, and quiet time. At first I resisted thinking I had little to offer, but God would not give up. As I prayed into the idea, He confirmed what I sensing in my heart. He began giving me plans for the retreat….a name for it, a location, the dates, and the Scriptures that would be taught.

And so today, I am sharing a few details with you. Not everything. Not yet.

 

Come Away Post 1 IG

 

I am calling the retreat “Come Away……2017”. The name is taken from Mark 6:31 where Jesus invites His disciples to come away with him and find rest. My prayer and my hope is that a handful of women will so desire a deeper relationship with Jesus that they will say ‘yes’ to His invitation to “Come Away” September 15-17. In the coming weeks I will share more about the retreat, but in the meantime, if you desire a more tender and intimate relationship with Christ, would you begin to pray about attending ‘Come Away….2017’?

Jesus longs to meet you there.

TA-DA!  Since you are reading this post a week or so after it went live, I have now posted more details about the retreat. Go HERE to find out the retreat schedule, location, registration and all that jazz.

SDG/FCA!!

 

GraceTruth-Featured

 

This post contains affiliate links.

Armed With Truth Temporary Scripture Tattoos

I have a confession to make.

 

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I’ve kinda, sorta wanted a tattoo for a few years. In fact, I had planned to get one for my 50th birthday, but then just did not do it. I guess I chicken-ed out. So, when the opportunity came along to try out the cute Armed With Truth temporary tattoos, well I immediately jumped at it. In exchange for this review I received one of their Verse Packs and one of their Designer Packs for my own personal use.

Here’s what I thought about this product.

The first one I tried went on super easy. Their are instructions on each tattoo, as well as the pack itself. With only a few steps and a wet cloth, I had my first Scripture tattoo on the inside of my arm. The only mistake I made was positioning it a bit too far down toward my wrist. Why was it a mistake? My watch slid up onto it throughout the day and rubbed it off.

 

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My Tattoo

 

My next application was just as easy, but was applied a bit higher on the inside of my arm. Armed With Truth says that these tattoos will last 3-5 days. I did not find that to be the case….but maybe I just have old skin. As long as their was no friction/rubbing on the area, the tattoo was really good for 1 day, maybe 2. By the third day, there were areas that had definitely rubbed off.

My third application went equally well and lasted about the same as the second. Overall, the wearability of these tattoos is less than expected for me.

 

Armed With Truth

 

Armed With Truth has a ton of options from which to choose for Verse Packs. I chose the Transformed Mind pack because it included a Romans 12:2 tattoo which is one of my life verses. I shared several of the verse tattoos in my pack with some women whose skin does not have quite the age on it that mine has and I will be interested to know if they achieved longer wear times.

Each verse pack costs $10.99 and includes 10 different Scripture tattoos, so they basically cost a bit over a dollar a tattoo.

The Designer pack that I chose was the In Christ Alone pack. It costs $4.99 and comes with two tattoos of the same design.

 

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Armed With Truth Tattoos can be purchased online from their website or in stores where they are carried. They also have a reward program where each purchase from the AWT site earns you rewards to use toward future purchases.

I want to offer you a 20% off coupon code that you can use for purchasing your own temporary Scripture tattoos. It is such a great way to carry Scripture with you for memorization. Please use the code ‘leahadams’ to get 20% off your purchase from Armed With Truth.

Y’all, there is also a giveaway of some of the tattoos that runs until May 5th, so click the link below to hop over and enter the giveaway of 1 FREE SCRIPTURE PACK and 1 FREE DESIGNER PACK.

 

Armed With Truth Emboldened Giveaway! (Contest on Hive.co)

This was a fun product to review. I’d love to hear if you have or want a tattoo.

 

 

 

Authentic: Have You Lost Your Spiritual Passion?

I am not a lazy woman. Most days I have a list of tasks that need accomplished and I revel in checking off that list throughout the day. As I have shared here and here before, rest is not something that comes easily to me. I have to be very intentional about carving out times of rest and relaxation. I definitely do not want to have to re-travel the road of God having to put me on my back in order to convince me to rest.

So, why is it that for someone who is so driven in daily tasks, it is sometimes easy to slide into laziness in my Christian walk? Oh, you too?

 

Romans 12 11 Spiritual Passion

 

That brings me to Romans 12:11, the verse that we are studying in our Authentic Christianity series this week.

 

Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. (ESV)

 

Let’s take a look at the verse in the NIV.

 

Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. (NIV)

As we have already studied in this series there are certain behaviors and attitudes that mark a Christ-follower.

Offering our entire selves to Christ as a living sacrifice

Allowing our minds to be transformed by His Word

Humility

Genuine love

Calling evil what it is

 

There are also other actions that mark a believer:

Bible study

Prayer

Sharing Christ with others

Making life and character choices that are godly

 

I am diligent about some of these things, but not so much with some others. I do very well with staying in Bible study, but sometimes grow lazy in my prayer life and in sharing Jesus with other people. Whether consciously or unconsciously, I fall into Satan’s trap of thinking that my prayer life is not as important as staying in the Word. Now, that makes about as much sense as me deciding that I will read all about my husband, Greg, but it really is not important for me to talk with him. Our relationship would never grow and deepen if we did not talk to each other. Same thing with my relationship with the Lord. If I only read about Him in the Word, but never have conversations with Him, my faith will stagnate.

Then, there is the issue of talking about Jesus and what He has done in my life with other people. Sometimes I am timid about it. Sometimes I am fearful of what others will think of me. But, according to Scripture, believers in Jesus have everything we need to live a godly life (2 Peter 1:3), and that means we are equipped to share Him with others. Could it be that I am not remembering the sacrifice Jesus made for me? Perhaps I have grown lazy in my remembering the cross and the empty tomb?

Y’all, I do not want to be lacking in enthusiasm and passion for serving my Jesus. I want to always remember the sacrifice that He made for me. So, how do we keep our spiritual fervor?

Well, I think that it has to start with remembering…remembering what Jesus has done for us…remembering what He has saved us FROM, as well as TO. It also includes staying diligent in studying His Word and in prayer. I am convinced it also requires me to stay in fellowship with other believers. Christian community is where we are encouraged and, yes, even corrected when we stray.

The better you and I know Jesus, the more we love Him. A vibrant Christian walk does not just happen, friend. It requires diligence and work. It requires sacrifice and persistence. But, it is so worth it.

So, let’s not be Eeyore Christians….walking around all gloomy and negative. Let’s show the world that walking with Jesus is exciting and fulfilling by maintaining our spiritual vibrancy!

Are there other ways you maintain your passion for Christ? I’d love for you to share them in the comments.

SDG/FCA!!

NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.