You've had - or are about to have - your much-longed-for summer holiday. It's good. Great even. Slowing down, relaxing, enjoying a different pace of life.
Then there's a long time until the next opportunity to relax. And actually, you realise you didn't necessarily draw much closer to God while you were away. You meant to. But somehow it didn't happen. There was the pool, the sea, the sand, the wine .. things to see and words to read and new opportunities ... and and and
So now you realise that you need a specific time of being intentional about allowing God to have more space and time and closeness.
You will have as much of God in your life as you choose.
What helps you to choose?
Maybe a special place. A few days specially dedicated to allowing the Lord to speak into your life.
"I didn't think much would happen over these few days," confided one retreatant on Friday morning. "there was no actual voice, no Damascus road experienced. But God. But God spoke in a way I hadn't expected. And I'm going home determined to allow Him to go on drawing close to me. Now I know more of how to do that. Thank you, thank you."
I hadn't done anything in particular. Just provided the bed and the breakfast tray and the morning prayer; made a few suggestions; prayed.
And God did what only He can do and He came and He drew near.
Maybe you could do with some time to allow Him to do that. Some time over the next few months when you could take a day or a few days or a week, and step off the normal merry-go-round in order to wait upon the Lord.
It doesn't have to be a silent week. It might be, but there are other suggestions too.
There will be days designed with you in mind. Some will be a single day, some will be a few days, some will be a week or a weekend. What will you choose?
A week for writers to come and write in peace and quiet and then talk and share over meals times and other times and spark each other to write.
Days for apple picking and apple cooking and apple processing; looking at how and why we are the apples of God's eye. Cooking in the amazing designer kitchen with its Aga and electric gadgets!
Blogging - learning from one other, intentionally writing and getting on to social media, sharing good practice.
Fabric days - bring your scraps, use the ones here, and stitch and sew and create, while talking and sharing together.
Creative writing - set times to write on set topics, share and learn from one another.
Young leaders - bring your questions and queries, your challenges and situations, and learn from experienced clergy leaders about setting priorities, establishing values and building teams
Women clergy - groups of younger women in ordained ministry, coming for support and prayer, and sharing with those who understand the challenges and peculiarities!
There will be others. But these are designed with you in mind.
What will you choose? What else could you suggest?
Dates will be on the website/retreats in the next week or two - I'll let you know as soon as the dates are posted, so that you can book soon and not miss out!
You 'll need a few days at Mays Farm by the time the autumn is here.
and to whet your appetite - this week's progress in photos. Enjoy.