Salvation Army officers seek God at close range at retreat
By: Lt. Colonel Allan Hofer
On Jan. 15, 25 officers from across the Southern Territory and six staff members met on the grounds of Berry College at the WinShape Retreat for four days of deep, intensive soul work. The presence of God was tangible as we met with him and allowed the Lord to move among us and in us. The best way to understand what took place is to read some of the feedback from the various delegates. For their privacy, I have removed their names.
“I am deeply grateful for the opportunity afforded me to attend the Territorial Spiritual Life Development Retreat. It was a life-changing experience for me – a sacred time of self-discovery and spiritual refocus. The moments of teaching and dialogue were remarkable and left me feeling as if it was tailored just for me. It was a God-ordained time, and I heard his voice clearly.”
“This retreat was everything I didn’t even know I needed. A time of rest, separation from the demands of my command and family. This retreat exposed the TRUTH of who I am and whose I am. It was said upon our arrival that we were going to go deep, and our souls may be agitated. … This retreat allowed me to heal many broken parts that I didn’t even know were there. Hurt people hurt people. Healed people help others heal. I am healed!”
“Ingrid Davis led us through very challenging and difficult exercises. There wasn’t down time, there was God time, and it was exhilarating! I wish I had had this during training! Not just learning about sacred space but going there and reaping the benefits of meeting God in it has reaffirmed me and strengthened my ministry. This week stopped the merry-go-round and was an opportunity to ‘reset’ the rhythms of my day.”
“The last days spent at WinShape Retreat were amazing, the complete atmosphere helped foster a time of renewing of my soul. Dr. Davis and your staff, in helping me to write my story through the history markers of my life, showed me through Scripture that I am more than my story. I am God’s child and I am loved by him. Today I walk in victory!”
“I am still processing all we experienced this week, but I do know that through this Territorial Spiritual Retreat, God is bringing healing to soul wounds, refreshment to places long devastated and restoration to places that I didn’t even realize needed restoration within me. ‘He leads me beside still waters and restores my soul. My cup runneth over.´”
“This retreat, as I worked on my Life Story, has been a great reflection of God carrying me through the storms and insecurities of my worth as an officer. It has brought healing. My word for this year is deeper and I have dug deeper into things that have been weighing me down and deeper in his word for peace, hope and joy!“
“We all have something in our lives that needs attention, we all have had our share of hurt and pain, we all have made poor decisions, we’ve all been affected by something in our lives that has impacted us emotionally. … This retreat helped me realize that I am precious in his sight and I can continue dealing with these things day by day in the wholeness of Christ.”
The next Territorial Officers Spiritual Retreat will take place Jan. 13-16, 2020.