I had a wonderful time at Camp Gilead. I got to stay in Cabin 0, which just so happens to the cabin I spent my first summer as a counselor in. It smells the same. I came home (after one night) and washed everything I took with me. I aired my hairbrush and mascara wand out on the porch. I saw an old friend, we worked together during the summer of '99, and she so very graciously included me in her little "group" that had come with her. (Thank you Faith!)
The theme for the retreat was "The Wisdom Behind the Apron" and the speakers were sharing about things they learned during transitional times of their lives.
The first speaker on Friday night was a gal named Hannah. She was pregnant and blonde and adorable and too young to have done much transitioning. Except that she became a widow at 23. Her husband was killed in Iraq, during his second tour of duty, when their son was six months old. Youch. Her story is incredible and her faith is inspiring! The Lord used it to speak directly to me as, I'm sure you remember, I have lived with a lot of fear as of late. She shared some great Bible verses, which were unfortunatley tossed into the recycle bin during Officer Hottie's Clean off the Kitchen Counter Frenzy of 2010. Oh well. I came away from that session with an immense feeling of peace and hope and the reiteration of the knowledge that Christ Jesus is stronger than death and my fears.
The second speakers were ok, although I wasn't as touched as I had been the night before. Sorry gals.
The third speaker on Saturday was a 70 year old great-grandma. She was hilarious. She talked about loving our husbands and forgiveness. She said sex and bitchy (in church!) without wincing or pausing and I fell in love with her.
As for my workshops...
I think they went well. The first one was really tough as it was in a teeny room and four of the gals were Russian and had someone interpretting for them. It was just confusing. Plus, one gal asked me a really challenging question about tithing, and not being a theology major, I was kind of at a loss for what to tell her. All in all though, I think people were able to understand my story, my heart and come away with some financial hope.
The second workshop went much better. The group was a little bit smaller and it was in a larger area...plus, no interpreter talking over me made for a higher comfort level.
I was able to share information about debt using lots of the ideas you gave me! Thank you, by the way. Your ideas were SUPER helpful. If I were more technology-savvy I would put the pages I shared with the gals on here so you could look over them...this is the best I can do. Click HERE for a reality check on debt and HERE for a sample budget if you seem to have a difficult time setting one up.
Thanks for your encouragement and prayers. It was a great time and I'm working on writing out our story so hopefully you will be inspired to see that if we could get out of $27,000 in debt in 14 months, anyone can!
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