Unwrapping Oregon

The smell of fresh ocean air and the quiet roar of waves welcomed me to Camp Bradley in Oregon this past weekend. The most cozy and fantastic seaside cabins were given to us to stay in! The beauty – so different from our mountain home, overcame me.  I love the water! It reminded me of the chilly coast of England.

150 ladies gathered to worship and dig into the Word with Kari Patterson, our retreat speaker.  Let me tell you, even though I am quote ‘ministering’, I am fully receiving. My life is changed so often when we travel to lead worship!  Kari is a sharp teacher and I loved getting to know her sweet heart.

One thing God illuminated in me is that I’m prone to worry.  And this uncovers a lack of trust. Often times, my mind spins through thoughts of how I can avoid problems. My husband knows how I enjoy being a human calculator, too. If things add up to a good outcome, I’m settled.  But if it doesn’t add up ‘my way’, I’m back to worrying.  This process began on my flight home to Colorado Springs before I chose to slam on my mental breaks to stop the worrying.

“Do you trust Me?” God prodded. I remembered what Kari said about trust.  It’s comes down to humility, knowing that God is bigger than me.  I need to admit that I can’t calculate the future, but that God can.  “We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to His purpose.” – Romans 8:28

Now, I can’t promise anything that grand (“All Things Work Together”, an oldie by Twlia Paris from my iTunes library came on in my ear buds while I flew over the clouds).

In my hands things often fall apart. I need to remember how capable God is, and humbly admit how incapable I am to carve out a good path for myself. I need the divine Guide.

This got me thinking about the circumstances that allowed us to travel to Oregon it the first place. Our return to Trail Christian Fellowship to lead worship for the women’s retreat was set up through divine navigation.  In 2009 my family had a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Maui together.  Enjoying the pool at the resort, my parents met a couple from Medford, Oregon who suggested we visit a church in Eagle Point when we were on tour later in 2009. So we did!  The friendship we made at Trail was awesome and this summer we remembered our time there.

Recently, seeing a gap in our calendar, Becca asked me, “Do you think Trail would want to have us back some day?” Little did we know that the very day our email was received, the women’s director was caught in a bind and needing a worship leader for their retreat coming up in a couple weeks!  Perfect timing. We booked our tickets and came to fill the need.  God is certainly the best guide we could ever ask for!

I try to entrust so many things to my own care – figuring out finances, health, my calendar, family situations and friends… it’s a habit that only through humbling myself I will break. I will give way to the most able Savior, Jesus Christ. “I will say of the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust’.” – Psalm 91:2

– Elissa

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