A few days before we left for this trip, more than 20 people gathered at our home to pray over and commission us. It was a powerful time. In a conversation later that evening, two very dear friends both heard the word "Sabbath" for us. They encouraged us to be very intentional about resting and having mindless fun between ministering.
We listened. I am writing to you on the train returning from two very fun-filled off days, our Sabbath, spent in the beautiful and amazing city of Edinburgh. Melinda lived there years ago and we have visited it together many times. I have also fallen in love with it. Juliette had never been, and since we were as close to it as we would get before she heads back to the States, we took advantage of a quick trip to the city.
We played, we laughed, we hiked, we rested. We Sabbathed.
Let me take a moment to share with you the significance of that.
We only had 2 days after returning from Lewis to get turned around and ready for our second retreat. Lewis was amazing. It also involved quite long travel days on both ends including land and sea. And because it was our first retreat, we were also establishing a new rhythm. As a result, we were already tired going into Compass 1, still dragging from the weekend before.
Compass 1 was a 2 1/2 hour drive from our base in Peterhead. It is located in Perth, near Glenshee, an area known for great amounts of snow in the winter complete with skiing. As we entered the area, we were met by a sign that said, "Perthshire, the Heart of Scotland." That felt incredibly prophetic. We would be ministering in The Heart of Scotland...
We had 14 ladies join us, many of whom have had some training in inner healing prayer ministry. What an honor to minister to ministers! Every lady took advantage of prayer ministry which kept all three of us very busy. Juliette ministered to 9 ladies, Melinda and I together ministered to 4 and I ministered to 1 on my own. This is in addition to facilitating the rest of the weekend.
Once again, we watched as God ministered so uniquely and so profoundly to each lady. The breakthroughs came quickly. Many were surprised at what God revealed and healed in them. One had suffered a severe break in her arm a year ago requiring subsequent surgeries. It had been a frustration to her. It's easy to wonder where Jesus was when this happened and why He didn't prevent it.
As she met with Jesus in her ministry session, He revealed to her where He was when she fell. She saw Him clearly standing behind her, supporting her head and neck, preventing additional and more severe injuries. Then she asked Him what it was that He wanted her to know about Him in the midst of these circumstances. He told her that He wanted to develop in her a compassionate heart. She is one who ministers. God told her He was preparing her more for what He was calling her to do.
By the end of the session, she was able to thank Him for the injury, knowing that He was there, He had protected her, and He was using it for her benefit. Think about that for a minute. That's a huge breakthrough.... And this was one who really didn't think she needed one-on-one ministry and only came to check it out.
That's just one story. There are many, many more. Like the young pastor's wife who was feeling boxed in and misunderstood. She didn't realize that God had designed her in a way that was out of the box and with great passion, and that it was OK! God began revealing to her His design and as a result, she became more comfortable and confident in her own skin right before our eyes, ready to embrace her unique design for His purposes.
Here is another story shared by Melinda: "On Saturday morning, during worship, I felt led to ask if anyone needed prayer for physical healing. At first no one stepped forward but after telling them to not be shy and take the opportunity to get prayer, more than half the group stepped into the centre for prayer. The rest of us laid hands on those in the center, and I led a corporate prayer for healing. I also prayed trauma off anyone who'd experienced trauma. The presence of the Lord was very strong as we worshiped and prayed all together.
The next morning, one lady testified that she'd fallen down stairs decades before, and had a head injury that still caused pain. During the prayer time the day before, she felt God lift the pain from her head. At the same time, she saw a picture of Jesus at the bottom of the stairs, catching her fall. Not only was she healed physically, God released her from years of trauma! We were all in awe of the Lord at work and this is just one of many stories of His power and love being manifest!"
Our prayer minister, Juliette, had this to say about the weekend: "What an amazing weekend! The 9 women with home I prayed heard the Lord in powerful, transforming ways. They went from angry, withdrawn, suspicious and anxious to confident, trusting, joyful and peaceful. Jesus gave them words of truth about themselves as well as their loved ones. It was so exciting to hear their stories and see the Father address their needs. What a privilege to be a part of His Kingdom work."
By Sunday morning of the retreat, we were all reveling in what God had done... And our physical bodies were completely depleted. We began wondering if planning a trip into the city right after a retreat was a good idea. But we were committed with train tickets so off we went.
Heather took us to Dundee where we caught the train for our 1hr 20min journey to Edinburgh. She had also found for us a great value hotel conveniently located just a 3 minute walk from the train station in the heart of the city within walking distance of pretty much everything we wanted to see and do.
It is here that we began what became a beautiful, fully unplugged Sabbath rest. So needed. So well timed. There is a reason God set apart the Sabbath. It is for our benefit. He knows we need it.
Today we are back up north to Peterhead where we are already jumping into the flow of prepping for our next event. This Dash Away is very near where we are staying so there are no big travel days involved.
God is sustaining us and keeping us healthy and for that we are eternally grateful. We are also incredibly thankful for our "weekend away" to play in the city. Oh, and here's a HUGE blessing.... The weather has been stellar the past few days! No rain at all. Full sun for 2 days now with temps in the upper 60s to low 70s. It's like God planned our Sabbath trip for us, complete with a dry, sunny forecast. Talk about favor!!