Our prayer is that On Retreat will help you break from habituated patterns of mind and frantic activity, make more space for God, and step into a new way of seeing, believing, and abiding. Each retreat will focus on a healthy body, a serene mind, and a powerful spirit. Your devoted guide will be modern day Christian mystic, Betty Skinner.
Affirming the Hope Hidden Within You,
~Cathy and Kitty
Christ in You
A Healthy Body
Hydrate: Drink a little water with lemon or green tea to begin.
Move: Do a few simple stretching exercises to energize your body.
Rest: Silently integrate the inner peace of your stretching practice for a few minutes.
A Serene Mind
Begin this portion of your time with God by sitting with a warm cup of coffee, tea, or water with lemon in a comfortable chair in a quiet place with your Bible close. Light a candle as a symbol of God’s presence with you.
The prophet Isaiah asked the question, “Who has ever intimately known the mind of the Lord, Yahweh?” (Isaiah 40:13) Seven hundred years later the apostle Paul answered him, “Christ has”, and stunningly added, “and we have the mind of Christ.” (1Corinthians.2:16)
The last thing Jesus did before he was betrayed and arrested in his beloved garden of Gethsemane was pray for his friends. He turned his eyes heavenward and said to his Father,
‘The very glory You have given me I have given them so that they will be joined together as one and experience the same unity that we enjoy. You live fully in me and now I live fully in them.’” (John17:22-23)
This is Truth. The Holy Spirit of Christ actually lives inside our mortal body right now. His heart is our heart and His mind is our mind. This is our hope of glory. (Colossians 1:27) But this astounding truth has been buried behind a dark wall of illusory self-protection forced on us by trauma and voices of fear. Our calling in this life is to rediscover the Truth of Whose and who we are, resist those voices, and reclaim the power and sanctity of our Christ hearts and minds. As the Apostle Paul exhorts us, take those negative thoughts captive and dwell on whatever is pure and lovely.
So pay attention and notice your negative or fearful thoughts. This is so important. They are so subtle, but they are so defeating. Your brain is hardwired to protect you from threats, so any negative word or thought will release dozens of stress-producing hormones. Most people spend their life imprisoned in the tiny confine of their thoughts that are nothing more than firings and wirings within their brain. You don’t have to do that. Your unhappiness is not coming from other people or your circumstances but from your mind’s conditioning. The Hidden Life Awakened
A Reflection from Betty
At last, the messenger becomes the message. I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. (Galatians 2:20) We finally see that everything in our lives—all of the pain and all of the beauty—has been woven together into the huge tapestry of divine love. The will is disciplined, the old voices are quieted, the heart is surrendered, and we hear only the voice of the Beloved saying, ‘I love you, I love you; I have loved you since the beginning of time. I will not abandon you.
A Powerful Spirit
Spend a little time now, letting the Living Word speak to your heart.
Rest Quietly with God
Use your imagination to visualize Jesus sitting there with you or in any other setting that brings you peace. Say to Him, “Beloved Jesus, you created me perfectly. You are in my body and Your mind is mine. How do you want me to think about this person or situation I am struggling with?”
Journal every thought that arises without censoring as a child would. This is the indwelling Spirit speaking truth to you. Trust this for now.