|Filoi's Getaway with God|
by Filoiann Wiedenhoff
August 31, 2009
Category: Christian Living
|ECENTLY I TOOK a few days off to get away with God before our family went on vacation this summer. I've been feeling tired and worn out lately from doing much serving and in need of more sitting at the Lord's feet. I felt it was important for me to regroup and get refreshed for my own sanity and for my families too. Not to mention also our church family. |
My husband kindly paid two nights for me to go off by myself to a nearby hotel and just took my necessities along with my bible, laptop (which has my bible program on it) and pen and paper.
In case you have never heard of a, "Getaway with God" I will explain... Getting away with God means to get away from the world, people and responsibilities for a time to spend quality time with Jesus through prayer, His Word, meditating on God's Word, applying God's Word and just plain resting in Christ.
Every person is different so time away with God is also different and unique. It could be an afternoon or evening away at a park, on a mountain top or it could be a weekend at a retreat place or hotel - whatever works best for you and your family.
It's also a time of refocus and renewal; allowing God's Word through the Holy Spirit to encourage and minister to the soul and in some cases comfort. I usually go once a year; my husband and I take turns going alone and then we go together twice a year on a weekend retreat with God. This is aside from our family vacations.
I highly recommend it for anyone who has a constant busy life and needs refreshment with God. Most pastors and their wives attend pastoral retreats but I think anyone who is in need of time alone with God should definitely try it...it's a blessing. God has always been faithful to meet me right where I am at. My husband recently took time away and was able to get a lot of rest during his weekend getaway.
What I Prayed...
During my time away with God, I usually pray for God to speak to my heart. I try not to go into my time with God with an agenda or a plan. If I were to go with an agenda I would be leading the getaway not God, so I went with no agenda at all but a simple heart felt prayer. "God speak to me in such a "personal" way that I just know it's from you." I had no idea what that meant or what I was asking; all I knew was that I needed a word from Him to encourage my spirit and rejuvenate my soul.
What I Believed...
I believed by faith that God was going to meet me there. I didn't know what I needed from Him but I believe He already knew and would reveal Himself to me in whatever way He saw fit.
What I Did...
I rested then spent some time in prayer but mainly I waited upon the Lord. During that time this scripture came to mind:
"Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us* with groanings which cannot be uttered." Romans 8:26-NKJV
What God Did...
What God did for me was so amazing that I had to share this with all of you. Remember earlier I said that I prayed that God would speak, "Personally" to me? I had no idea how God was going to do this - nor did I know what exactly I was asking of Him, but I figured God was faithful to answer that prayer and I was willing to receive anything He wanted to give me.
What God did for me was more than I could ask or think. He answered me in a way that was nothing short of a miracle. Before I even opened my bible, I felt God speak to my heart saying, "You did not choose me but I chose you." I was familiar with the passage and already felt encouraged by these words and immediately went to the Word of God to read where the passage came from. It said;
"You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you. John 15:16-17-NKJV
This passage blessed me because it spoke to me about our personal relationship, His ownership and how we belong to Him and He belongs to us and through that relationship we are provided for and appointed to bear fruit-fruit that remains. BUT that wasn't all! Something (I know now it was the Holy Spirit) told me to read above the scripture to get the full understanding of the passage, so I started reading from John 15; 1 to verse 17.
The answer to my personal prayer was in verses 14-15;
"You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you. John 15:14-15-NKJV
In this passage Jesus redefines our relationship with Him from a slave to a friend. Just as Abraham was called, "the friend of God" they had an intimate relationship where God held nothing back from Abraham. We ourselves have now been given that same privilege and personal relationship by faith through grace in Jesus Christ.
"And the LORD said," Shall I hide from Abraham what I am doing," Genesis 18:17-NKJV
"And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, "Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness."* And he was called the friend of God." James 2:23-NKJV
But that's not all folks ...
Remember how I prayed for God to speak to me personally, so personal that I would know it was from Him? This blew me away and I think when you read this it will blow you away too. In looking at the verses again, John 15:14-15, where it says, "I called you friends," the Hebrew and Greek translation in the inter-linear bible definition for friends is "filoi". (NT:5384 filos, philos (fee'-los); which means dear and fond friend.
Hopefully you all know that Filoi is my first name and what makes this more interesting is that my name is Samoan! (South Pacific Islander of Samoa) What are the odds that I would read out of the entire 66 books of the bible that particular scripture that specific weekend coming with one heart felt prayer? It could only be God!
I don't think He could have said anything more personal to me than that. I was changed from that moment forward seeing how God not only heard my prayer but showed me His faithfulness to remind me that He knows me; where I'm at and knows my name.
So the LORD said to Moses," I will also do this thing that you have spoken; for you have found grace in My sight, and I know you by name." Exodus 33:17-NKJV
That night I was so lifted up, I just knew that I knew He was God and also that He was my God. I went home more than just revived I went home flying. My spirit was soaring and I once again was ready to continue living for Him with all my heart.
If you are in need of a getaway with God I encourage you to not delay. Our personal intimate relationship with Christ is the very foundation we stand on. We need Jesus to fill us, water us and restore us. Remain in Him and He will remain in you and you will bear much fruit-fruit that will last. I hope you are encouraged as I am that He loves His children dearly and also that He knows our names and understands what we are going through.
"For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need." Hebrews 4:15-16-NKJV
I hope you will have a chance to get away with God and remember...Don't hesitate to take time out for God because God already took time out for you!
May God bless your day with His Presence!
Filoiann Wiedenhoff is a Pastor’s Wife, Work at Home Mom, Woman’s Biblical Counselor, Bible Teacher and Writer. You can subscribe to her monthly newsletter and visit her website.
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