If only I could get away, mama needs a break. Oh, sweet sister, I hear you loud and clear – a personal retreat has never sounded so good!
The daily hustle of taking care of everyone else is our excuse for putting ourselves at the bottom of our to-do list.
Somehow we get lost, and before we know it, we’re running on empty.
Taking A Personal Retreat
I remember my mentor, Lorri, encouraging me to take a weekend away – downtime for just me and God so I can return home refreshed.
Lorri was the type of mentor that led by example. Once a quarter she would check into a hotel for the weekend with no husband and no kids.
Her weekend plans were filled with a massage, intimate moments with God, and simply doing something that would feed her spirit, soul, and body.
While that sounded heavenly, our budget at the time, didn’t have the wiggle room for it. So I did what most mama’s do when there isn’t enough – I went without.
Fast forward 10 years later and I’m still daydreaming about a “personal retreat.”
While I make time for fascia blasting, exercising, and eating a plant-based diet, there’s another element to this personal retreat that’s much more important – stepping away from every distraction and sitting at the feet of Jesus.
I’m not talking about having our daily Bible time with God. I’m talking about stepping away from everyone and everything for the sole purpose of renewing our spirit, soul, and body.
“Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” ~ Matthew11:28 (NLT)
Sisters, we cannot continue to pour from an empty well! Yes, we have put out the fires and run our homes like a CEO of a company. But if we don’t go before the Lord for the rest that only He provides, we will continue to run on fumes and eventually crash.
Lately, this has been stirring on my heart. Especially during this time of “shelter in place.” Checking into a hotel isn’t even possible with hotels closed and many people out of work.
However, over the last few weeks I’ve been seeking God about creating this personal retreat experience from my home.
You see, carving out this time isn’t about where we have the experience. The only thing that matters is having the experience.
The purpose of a personal retreat is to relinquish our burdens before the Lord; renew our spirit by communing with God; and reflecting on what God shows us during this time.
When we remove the distractions of tending to the needs of others, social media, technology, etc., we free our minds and our spirits to hear clearly from God.
As a result, our bodies will shut off the auto-pilot of busyness and enter into rest.
Charm and grace are deceptive, and beauty is vain [because it is not lasting], but a woman who reverently and worshipfully fears the Lord, she shall be praised! ~ Proverbs 31:30 (AMPC)
When we take intentional, isolated time away from our normal hectic routine, we experience the following benefits:
- Renewed Energy
- Mental and Spiritual Clarity
- Increased Creativity
This can be extremely helpful when you’re walking through an illness and need time to rest so your body can heal.
How To Plan One
Remember the purpose of a personal retreat is to relinquish your burdens, renew your spirit, and reflect. Therefore, your itinerary should reflect that purpose, doing whatever brings your peace to your heart.
To help make the planning process easier on you, here are a few suggestions. I also created a personal retreat guide you can download from our community library or by clicking the link below.
Book Your Retreat
The same way you would book a vacation or weekend getaway, book your retreat. Plan it around a time that works for you and your family, and put it on your calendar. Your retreat can be for a few hours, a day or a couple days, whatever is realistic for you to do, just make sure you set a realistic date for yourself.
Spend some time in prayer asking God to show you how to spend your time.
Plan Your Itinerary
Decide in advance what your day will look like. You can go for a walk get a massage, study, listen to a sermon give yourself a facial. Do whatever renews your spirit, soul, and body.
Now that you know what you have planned, it’s time to start preparing for your retreat. Make a checklist of what needs to happen for you to experience your retreat. Gather supplies you may need, create your worship playlist, make arrangements for your family if necessary, prepare the room or location you plan to have your retreat.
Make Your Appointment
Don’t RSVP for your retreat and then not show up! Enough said!
Part of the experience of a personal retreat is to walk away changed. For that to happen, we must identify what we are relinquishing or what we are laying down at the feet of Jesus. Then we must spend some quiet time before the Lord to hear what He is saying to us.
Listening is just one part, it’s the execution that will help us transform. When we allow ourselves quiet time during our retreat for reflection we will walk away with clarity for the days ahead.
In The End
Whether you plan a few hours, an entire day or a few days, purpose to book a personal retreat for yourself. Because you’re worth it!
PS. Don’t forget to download your Personal Retreat Guide from our Community Library or by filling out the form below.
~ Timberley Gray
Kristi Woods says
You’re so right–we cannot pour from an empty well. We need the Filler. <3 And how neat that your mentor took a monthly "away" retreat. Great idea! But for those of us without the means to do that, personal retreats are an excellent idea. Thank you for showing us how to plan one.
Thank you Kristi for stopping to read. ~ Blessings
Ava James says
I love this idea. Retreat and rest. Thanks for you great printable!
So glad you like it! Thank you for stopping by to read. ~ Blessings
Mary Jane Humes says
Very nice! This article reminded me of the verse Mark 6:31 And he said unto them, Come ye yourselves apart into a desert place, and rest a while: for there were many coming and going, and they had no leisure so much as to eat. This is a command. Jesus needed rest and we too need it.
Amen! I love that verse. Thank you for stopping by to read. ~ Blessings
Susan Perez says
Good ideas and good advice.
Lisa M Kimrey says
Love, love, love this idea! I’m doing this! Thank you!
Completely on-point. We go so hard after our goals that we sometimes forget to take care of ourselves, so we can keep going after those goals. Thanks for this reminder.
Michelle Mackey says
Love this! Going to plan a writing retreat sometime soon!
That sounds like something I may need to plan too, separate from my self-care retreat. ~ Blessings
Enock Luyonza says
I am writing a book on Maximizing personal retreats, I found this blog insightful and would like your permission to use some of the ideas here in my work if you don’t mind.
Thanks for a well done piece!
Thank you for stopping by to read and your kind words. You may quote a sentence or two from the article as outlined in on our Principles page, if you need to reference more please refer to our principles page for further instructions. https://livingourpriorities.com/principles/