At 2:58pm yesterday, I returned home from one of the most awesome, intense, transformational, profound, exhausting, replenishing, breathtaking experiences of my entire life.
For about 48 hours from Friday afternoon to Sunday, I was hanging with the Holy Spirit and about 60 other women at Christ Community Church's Women's Retreat 2011. The theme was "Come Away..." And away we certainly went.
God showed up in a huge way, especially for me. I could literally write a book (ok, well at least a 20 page report) about the profound revelations and transformation that God revealed in my heart this weekend. But today, I would like to share with you how God allowed me to "Taste the Rainbow."
Can you see Him? Look closely.
He was there!
We arrived on Friday afternoon and in typical conference fashion, were scrambling around ironing out last-minute details (I was on the planning team.) As registration was winding down, Pam (the preacher's wife) gasped and said "Hey ya'll, LOOK."
Outside the window, over the trees in the distance was a rainbow. Please note that it had not rained on us all day. I took note, thought it was cool and continued to scramble. Little did I know that a revelation was brewing (no, not the FINAL revelation... just A revelation.)
I was set to close out the evening that night in prayer before we dismissed for free time or sleep time or whatever time. As that neared, I prayed that God would give me the words he wanted me to say. Suddenly, the revelation hit me. The rainbow. It is scriptural. As worship was winding down, I grabbed my phone, opened the Bible App YouVersion and searched "Rainbow." It appears in Genesis and Revelation (beginning and the end.) Specifically in Genesis 9:14-15 it says, "Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind." Hmmm, very interesting. Promises and convenant. Duly noted.
Another verse appeared in Ezekiel 1:28-- "Like the appearance of a rainbow in the clouds on a rainy day, so was the radiance around him. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD. When I saw it, I fell facedown, and I heard the voice of one speaking." Also profound. The worship music wound down and it was time to pray in front of these 60 ladies.
I briefly shared with the girls about the rainbow and the Scripture from Ezekiel. We had already experienced a profoundly moving night during the programming, and I mentioned that the rainbow was a physical sign of God's presence if anyone was doubting that he showed up that night. I began to pray. My heart was pounding and my knees were weak. Not from nerves, but I was pretty sure that the Holy Spirit was so overwhelming I was going to hit the floor (facedown) if he also hadn't been there to hold me up.
I got done praying and I would love to share with you what I said. But I have NO IDEA. Everyone said it was really legit and moving, but the only thing I remember was saying that God invited us to come away (romantically speaking) and didn't greet us with roses or chocolates, but with a promise of his love in the sign of the rainbow (please take note: we will come back to this momentarily.)
So yeah, that was awesome. But it doesn't stop there. God, as usual, was an overachiever and was with us all weekend in a big way. Long story still long, Hollie spoke the next morning about how God calls us beautiful. He loves us and romances us. Doesn't get made, doesn't condemn. He LOVES. Oh how he loves us! Hollie then gave us all personalized, individual love letters FROM God. (He used the hands of some of the women in church to write them, but there was NO DOUBT that they were done well in advance of the conference and were from HIM.)
Well, I took my love letter and went outside under a shade tree for quiet processing time. Good thing I was sitting down, because one of the first sentences of my personal letter said "Some offer ROSES or CHOCOLATES or other earthly trinkets, I have gifts for you-- gifts of POWER and TRUTH. Gifts with ETERNAL VALUE and lifelong benefits." Holy roses and chocolates people!! Needless to say, my love letter also has a few salty teardrop marks.
God was there. But the even better news is that God is HERE too. In my living room. Around your computer screen. In your car. At work. At home. At the gym. AND He love you. SO MUCH. More than any words can say or song convey. HE LOVES YOU!!! He longs to be with you, transform you, speak to you, love on you daily. Let Him. Receive His gifts. Come away with Him, open up your heart and let Him in... If you do, He too will let you TASTE THE RAINBOW!
All for His Glory,
"Then I saw another mighty angel coming down from heaven. He was robed in a cloud, with a rainbow above his head; his face was like the sun, and his legs were like fiery pillars." --Revelation 10:1