I do not make New Year's resolutions.
Oh, I used to. They always had something to do with losing weight and reading through the Bible in a year. I never accomplished them, so I stopped making them.
You only have to beat this dead horse so long before she finally sees the light.
While I do not make resolutions, it just so happens that there are times when things tend to fall in my my lap. And if that tends to happen at the end of the year sometimes, who am I to refuse the opportunity? Bear with me while I tell you the story of one such thing....
Introspection has always been a good thing for me. It's wanted, it's needed, and without it I tend to go just a little nuts.
More than usually, that is.
I used to be able to go on retreats a couple of times a year to get away from everyone and everything and just concentrate on what mattered most - my relationship with God. Who He is, what He means to me, how I can serve Him better, what I need to do to please Him and develop the relationship between the two of us.
Unfortunately, finances are and have been at a premium around here, and all my avenues for inexpensive retreats have been taken away. My Dad sold a cabin I used. The friend I had in hotel management quit her job. I was left without funds and without a place to go.
The relationship God and I have has suffered this past year. No doubt about that. With the seemingly continued illnesses one right after the other, with family problems, with financial problems, and with the depression that tends to invade all of the above, I have tended to withdraw more than seek Him. At times I've truly not been able to see much past the end of my nose.
So much for a Year of Jubilee.
Oh, don't get me wrong. I haven't gone off the deep end or submerged into the waters of self-pity and depression. Far from it. I'm just tired. Very, very tired. Mentally, spiritually, and physically. And I say this at the end of a week of vacation! Something has got to change.
And it has to be me.
Enter Pioneer Woman.
Now, for those of you who read her, you realize I did not get any Great Spiritual Awakening from reading Confessions of a Pioneer Woman. Great recipes, yes. A great fear of calf nuts, yes. A great connection to the Holy of Holies? Not so much.
A lady from the eastern part of my state commented on PW's blog about monks who make fruitcakes to support themselves in the central part of my state, which led me to that website. That website led me to another website for the Hermitage Spiritual Retreat Center. If you go to this website you will find EXACTLY what I've been looking for since my other avenues of retreat were taken away.
What's more, it's provided at no cost.
The Center simply asks for donations to continue to provide a place for people to connect, refresh, and renew their relationships with God.
In case you've been listening so far, I would fall smack-dab into the middle of that category. In the coming year I fully intend to take advantage of the most excellent gift God tossed in my lap...an opportunity to have a couple of days alone with Him.
An opportunity to fall in love with Him all over again.
I can hardly wait. I've already emailed the Center for information!
God is good.
But as for resolutions....they're for the birds.
Happy 2008 Y'All!