Review of the 2018 Employee Reflective Retreat
On April 5, 2018 the Spiritual Life Development Department hosted an Employees Reflective Retreat out at Star Lake Camp for the employees of Territorial Headquarters and ARC Command. Throughout the day, the employees that decided to attend were introduced to a variety of spiritual disciplines and were given space to worship and spend focused time in God’s presence…a break from the everyday demands of work. It was a fantastic day of prayer, scripture, silence, nature and praise.
We wanted to share some of the experiences from that day. We asked Terrell Curry (IT for ARCC), Gail Orser (CRD) and April Foster (Others) for their impressions of the retreat.
Why did you register for the Employees’ Reflective Retreat?
Terrell: I want to improve the current version of myself. I want to go from the 1.0 to a 2.0 version. I want to take every opportunity to allow God and who he has chosen to impart ways I can draw closer to the father through our Lord Jesus Christ. This was my second year in attendance and I knew this experience would make a difference in the person that I am today.
Gail: I registered for the Employees’ Reflective Retreat because I thought I really needed it. My workload has been on overload as I took on additional responsibilities during a period of transition. I wanted to be sure I was taking care of myself and this seemed to be a good opportunity to take some time out and listen to what is God is saying to me.
April: I registered because it is such an amazing opportunity to be able to step out of the day to day, pause, breath and refresh. I also really enjoyed interacting with people from THQ that I don’t normally see in the course of a day. I felt the retreat represented the value that the Salvation Army places on the spiritual well-being of not only its officers, but its employees as well.
Was there a specific part of the day that impacted you spiritually?
Terrell: I really enjoyed Major Forever Young, and how we engaged in the life of the woman with the issue of blood and Jarius daughter who was on her death bed. It was a reminder of how God is so big, mighty and merciful that He considers all. Jesus does not pick and choose, there is enough of HIM for everyone in this world and the world to come. It just reminds me of the hope we have in a Gracious and Loving King. It reminds me that He wants to get involved and be involved in our/my everyday life. I was truly awakened in my spirit to a deeper level of God love for everyone.
Gail: The whole day was a gift. I am so blessed to work for an organization that encourages you to take care of yourself and to focus on God. It was a really good reminder for me that I should be journaling. I still have not started it up again, but I will. I know that I grow a lot when I journal. I was grateful for the reminder.
April: I think from the very start of the day with worship, to the classes, shared meal, walk in nature – all of it was beautifully woven together to make just a few short hours seem very long and deep in terms of its impact. I felt drawn into the spirit of the day and carried along by those around me. As we started worship, the sun was shining through the windows and I felt that we were all ‘bathed’ in God’s presence. I loved that the day engaged all of my senses – my head, my heart, my eyes, my ears…..
What was in your opinion the best part of the day?
Terrell: To be able to engage with colleagues that I only may say hello to, in passing at the job but never really took the time to get to know them. And know how to pray for them. I really saw something special in the people I work with and how they engage in worship. That was my highlight.
Gail: The best part of the day was the Labyrinth. I just needed some time to review what is happening in my life, both personally and professionally, and this gave me some time to do that, and some insights. I could actually hear God speaking to me at a couple of points.
April: I think for me all of the parts of the day worked so well together, that in the end I felt like I had been deeply connected – with others and with my own faith journey. The word ‘retreat’ almost doesn’t really capture what the day was for me. I stepped out of something (the normal day to day routine), but I also felt that I stepped INTO something and for that I am very grateful.
The Employee Reflective Retreat is an annual event. If interested in attending our next retreat, please check the the Lotus Notes Bulletin Board or contact SLD for next year’s dates.