Swords, shields and troop carriers. Sounds a bit like war doesn’t it?
With the theme of ‘Women in God’s Armour’, the 51st Retreat of the Lutheran Women of the Upper North Zone was held at Camp Willochra at Melrose, on the weekend of 26th-28th Feb 2021. The 31 women (from various denominations) who attended were led by Pastor David Christian through a series of Bible Studies examining and applying the Armour of God to their lives.
Christians, today more than ever it seems, are in a battle. Using the words of St Paul’s letter to the Ephesians (6:10-18) in the Bible, God instructs us to put on the war armour He has given us: to protect and defend us, and ‘attack’ with the sword of the Spirit (God’s word). Above all, we are to pray. We were stirred up to recognise that Christians are NOT on a cruise ship, but on a troop carrier…off to war: a war not only to protect ourselves but to bring others the message of the good news that Jesus can destroy the power of sin in your life.
Some rousing songs including Majesty, Amazing Grace (My Chains are Gone), The Summons, Onward Christian Soldiers, A Mighty Fortress is our God, and Stand Up, Stand Up for Jesus, led by very capable musicians helped reinforce the theme.
No Retreat would be complete without wonderful food. Lettie Allen catered magnificently for us, plus two men cooked a delicious BBQ. Thank you to Lettie, Pastor Brian Keller, and Barry Harvie.
The group was inspired by three guest speakers. Lettie (retired Anglican Priest) talked about her ‘Food on Friday’ initiative in Port Pirie. Joy Christian and Kylie Kupke both gave testimonials of how God’s armour has personally protected them through their lives.
Other activities included an Icebreaker where small groups were challenged to construct a full suit of armour out of cardboard! Amazingly realistic!!! Opportunities for reflection, relaxation, swimming in the pool and a craft session were enjoyed. A Quiz with numbers for all the answers, on the Saturday night was energetic and entertaining.
Sunday morning’s Church service was celebrated with Holy Communion, with several visitors from across the Zone joining us.
Our group of women this year had several new faces, and plenty of familiar ones.
Everyone was sensitive to Covid restrictions, being guided by the organising committee, capably led by Lyn Zanker.
We are looking forward to all meeting again next year.
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