In quietness and rest is your strength. Isaiah 30:15

Instead of answering a question this week I thought I’d like you know what I’m doing.

There is a little word that appears at the end of certain psalms – “selah”. The exact meaning is not known but it is often interpreted to mean “pause”. The psalms were often set to music so perhaps it was a notation to the choir master. But I think it can provide an important clue for us today as well. So often in our hectic lifestyles we do not take moments of pause. For many reasons we scurry from one activity to the next, hardly stopping to catch our breath or go to the bathroom let alone give ourselves permission to take an official pause. But this week I’m taking an intentional week to recharge and refresh my body, spirit, and soul.

I’m about 2 hours outside Houston Texas, at a place called Roundtop Retreat Center. Carol Lewis, founder and president of First Place for Health sponsors a special week for writers and speakers to take time to pause. There is no television, internet or computer access. But we have lots of quiet time and our all meals are nutritious and cooked for us (best part). Daily we can walk, bike, and attend exercise sessions. We’re coached in wellness and nutrition and have time to connect with other women to pray, cry, laugh or sit and do absolutely nothing. We share morning devotions and evening heart-to-heart talks where we encourage, support and love one another.

I share this with you because as women we don’t often take time out just for ourselves or to be together with other women. We feel too selfish or too guilty or tell ourselves that we’re just too busy to stop. We believe that if we don’t keep all our plates spinning the world we run will collapse. But that’s not true. Jesus often withdrew by himself to pray, to refresh his spirit, and to gain more strength. He also hung out at the home of friends, particularly Mary, Martha and Lazarus where he didn’t have to worry about being “on” but could just relax.

So yesterday I made my husband a big pot of chili and a pan of lasagna to eat during the week. I packed my bags, loaded my kindle with three new novels, tucked in my journal and bible and carefully selected some spiritual reading I’ve been waiting to dig into. I’m here, the sun is shining, the temperatures rising and I’m looking forward to see what God will do. If you think of me pray that I press more deeply into God and experience to the fullest what he has for me.

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