The other day my daughter Ashley and Audrey (her/our friend) came out to the house - to stage an area for a mini "photo shoot" for the sake of getting a picture for a poster that we are making for an event. Audrey came in with totes full of garland, and pretty things. Then she scoured the place to find just the right thing to put out, for making the room look homey, welcoming, warm, inviting ...
Some books there, a nice pillow here. A teapot there, some garland here. She made it look easy - the details looked like they had always been there. Audrey is going to come and decorate for Christmas - it is part of her gifting, and it brings her much joy! She asked and I said I would love her help! Little things - little details. They made such a difference to warm up the space and make it feel like you would love to come and retreat!
Does God care about the details? I know that this is a topic that sometimes comes up in a discussion. Some people think that God is way too important and involved with BIG things to care about little details. Personally, I love thinking of God as the ultimate parent! And being a parent myself I think of what I loved about having children. One thing (of course there are MANY THINGS) that I think of are the many times my kids would come up and just sit on my lap and tell me what was on their heart ... later, when they were older, they didn't sit on my lap but we still had time together. I loved those times - all the times when they told me details of their lives. I loved helping them with the details. I loved spoiling them with little details. I loved the delight I would see in their eyes, or hear in their voices. So if I, being the mom I am - delighted in the details of my kids lives - then why wouldn't my heavenly Father be delighted in the details of our lives? Which is why, I think that He is.
(you have heard me talk about "kisses" before - or about "God-things" .... yep, I think He loves the details!)
You know, one thing that God has impressed on me over the past few years, is that so many women do not feel "precious" in any one's eyes but most of all that they do not realize how precious they are in the eyes of God! I have seen too many women - young and old - who do not feel validated, or loved, or worth anything. Too many women who do not see how beautiful they are to God especially. I believe that God had me working within the church setting (as a pastor for 7.5 years) to show me exactly those things, and to impress on my heart - that our place of retreat needed to be a place where women could come and just be. They could come and just sit in their jammies for the day if that is what they wanted. They could come with their daughters, or sisters, or moms. They could come for a day or a night or perhaps for a weekend! God also impressed on us, that we needed to offer details within the house, that spoke to the senses of women. For instance - the color of the rooms, the linen, the art work, the cups that they drank their coffee out of. Things like the bikes that they could sign out for a ride, or the garden that they could walk around, or the deck they could sit on to watch the birds eat from the feeders. Details like the music that might be playing, or the comfy chair purchased for them to cozy up in. Details ... details ... details.
We have been working on those details. We have been scouring the Internet and the stores for just the right thing. We have been ordering chairs, and duvets, and dishes. Details that we hope will speak to the senses of women and help them to feel absolutely treasured, and treated special. This is our prayer.
I have loved the fact that there are women in my life who have prophetic gifting, and whom God has used to speak into the ministry and my life. I just found out that another fairly new friend of mine (I met her two years ago but feel like I have known her much longer) - well she told me that God had given her something for me.
I asked L if she would mind if I shared it with you all on this blog, and she was fine with that. When we talked at first - she shared briefly, but later once she got home - she sent me the note she had written on her ipad when God "gave" this word to her. Here it is: (I have chosen to put "breaks" in it - mostly so that you could read it and just see what God is saying about details.
Sat. Oct 13
Was praying for you on my ride into city today and Got "God is in the details".
I had been praying for your purchases/shopping for the retreat house and saw many items that you were shopping for. I'm sure you are asking the Father about all of this, but I felt very impressed for you to wait on The Lord and ask Him specifically about the accessories you buy. wait and listen for His direction. saw you hesitating over some things The Father was moving you to purchase, wondering if that could possibly be right, and buying them anyway, not sure why on earth they would be important.
He knows exactly who will be under that roof, what will move them, touch them, speak to their heart about how much He cares for them exactly where they are at, what will jog a memory, soften them, melt them.
He IS in the details! a vase, a picture, a comforter, a pillow, a colour, a mug, a candle stick, a bird feeder, an aroma.
How Gracious Our Father is to use silly earthy things to jolt us, move us, break us, mend us, reach us, engage us. He knows the secret places of our hearts and minds and chooses to make Himself known. what a wonderful Saviour!
NOW .. you tell me!! Is God in the details? I say YES. Thank you Lord for speaking to me through the word you gave to L. Thank you for her willingness to share it with me! To you O Lord - we dedicate our purchases - and our ministry. To your name be praised O Lord.