RETREATS (For Reflection, please scroll down)
At the heart of Scripture engagement is our relationship with the Living God. Engaging with Scripture is essentially an interaction with the Living God through his written Word. The Word draws us into the presence of God himself, inviting us to know and trust Jesus, receive his grace, enjoy his fellowship, hear his perspective and re-centre our lives on him. For this to happen, we need to spend time soaking in Scripture and prayerfully looking at our lives in light of the Word.
Retreats invite us to do this. They are an invitation to come to God, the source of life. As we spend time in silence drinking from God’s Word and reflecting on our lives, we open ourselves up to God’s work in us. Retreats are about creating space for this to happen – alone or in a communal context.
The following examples of retreats are from real life IFES events. We hope that they will draw you into a deep experience with God and his Word.
_An Honest Conversation with God: Praying our Lives (Psalm 42-43)
_We Do Not Lose Heart: Encouraged to Keep Going (2 Corinthians 4:1-18)
_Desiring Growth (John 15:1-8)
_Running the Race with Perseverance: Letting go and Looking to Jesus (Hebrews 12:1-3)
_Compassionate Living (Matthew 20:29-34)
The following retreat notes were developed by Annette Arulrajah, Regional Secretary for IFES East Asia for meetings in her context. They are particularly helpful for staff wanting to reflect on their life, ministry and student movement:
When we run events, we want to use the time well – often leading to full programmes. Participants receive a lot of input, inspiration and ideas. We hope that afterwards, they will take the time to sort through what they have heard and prayerfully integrate what is important to them in their lives. Yet when they return home, the demands of daily life often prevent this from happening. How can we give them time to digest and discern how God is speaking to them during our events?
Here are some concrete examples from our IFES fellowship:
_Candle of the Day. An example from the staff week of the Ukrainian movement, August 2021. The candle of the day
_Selah. A frequent practise in East Asia. Read more here.
_An example from the end of a staff week. Matthew7endofweekreflection