At least that's what it feels like being back from my week away on Coronado.
For those of you who don't already know, this wasn't just a week away, this was a week spent one-on-one with a counselor/spiritual advisor. The Beckers have been in this type of ministry for over 10 years. They host individuals and couples who are in ministry at their cottage for one week at a time and offer 5 days of rest and relaxation at the cottage mingled with approximately 20 hours of intensive personal (or couples) counseling. I think it may prove to be the most life-changing "retreat" experience of my life.
I arrived Sunday evening not knowing what the week held. Fran met me at the entrance to the cottage to show me around. It was nice and crisp and airy inside the cottage; and outside, in the little "courtyard" was a hot tub and some lounge chairs. All for me. And there was also a beach cruiser for me to use. I informed Fran that although I might try my hand (or feet) at it, I'd be traveling by foot most of the week.
(If you read my earlier post about wanting a bike, you'll be happy to know that I did get on this bike and definitely made some good progress from where my learning left off last summer. I was proud of myself. Now if I could just convince Christopher to get us some bikes.)
Fran left and I settled into my new home for the week. I picked a book off of one of the shelves and read for a while before going to bed.
Monday morning started with a walk, a Psalm and a prayer, much like every other morning at the cottage, and then a visit with Fran. Our visits lasted anywhere from 1.5 to 2.5 hours. I would have the afternoon free to go wherever I wanted, but I had to make sure to do my homework (I did have Thursday afternoon and evening completely free...it was nice) before coming back at 4:30 to meet for another 1-2 hours. I went into the week not having a clue what "issues" we might talk about because things in my life have been on the up-and-up as of late. Little did I know...
Suffice it to say that God wanted to lay hold of my "innermost" parts. And He did. There won't be a lot of people who get to hear everything I learned about myself, my life, my heart and what that all means to me now. It was a really tough week, but I will say that it was all more worth it than I even know now. I have homework for the next year (maybe my whole lifetime...we'll see how it goes) and I will have to work a lot harder than I ever have. But thank God He prepared me for this trip on so many different levels, he gave Walt and Fran the desire to invite me, He gave Fran the discernment to know where to take the week and he gave me the willingness to follow her (and Him) through the week.
I will disclose that I experience what Fran has termed "free floating anxiety". I didn't realize it, but I no longer knew how to be still and not think about all the stuff I "have" to do. Christopher always told me I needed to relax. I guess he was right.
Thank you to all of you who helped Christopher and Bella through the week. I know they couldn't have done it without you! And I certainly couldn't have had this experience without you, so thank you so very much! To those of you who are in ministry and this sounds like something that might appeal to you and/or your spouse, go to www.coronadocottage.org. The Beckers would be happy to hear from you!