I recently was the speaker at a women’s retreat for the Philadelphia Church and the theme was “Treasure Island” based on Colossians 2:3. It was held in Ocean Grove, NJ, which is a quaint ocean front town with big Victorian houses – many of which are Bed and Breakfasts. The weather was beautiful and although the “season” had ended, several people were in the water. The Presence of the Lord could be felt on that town. It was so nice to see the big cross lit up at night and the worship services held on Sunday in the open air pavilion on the beach. I was so blessed that weekend! The ladies were some of the loveliest woman I have met, and they all made me feel so welcome. The retreat itself was put together with perfection, thanks to Jewel and her committee. There were chocolate sand dollar lollipops on the registration desk, and beautiful tote bags with handbooks and a CD of their favorite songs when they got to their rooms. (Each woman was asked their favorite song when they registered for the retreat.) There was a huge treasure chest filled with gold wrapped gifts tied with gold ribbons and silver beads. Each lady got to choose one and all the gifts were wonderful treasures, such as hand made prayer shawls and jewelry. God even blessed us with a firework display the first evening!
I had been hoping to find a sand dollar on the beach and at the end, I did find a few. One very special lady gave me her gift from the treasure chest – a stained glass sand dollar – because she knew I wanted one so much. And another gave me several of the sand dollars she found on the beach to take home to my grandchildren.
We ended the retreat with communion on the beach. Thank you Jewel, Lorraine, and all the ladies for making this retreat so special! I pray that my message was as much as a blessing to my wonderful new friends!