GLINK Mid-Year Retreat

GLINK Mid-Year Retreat

Our Generation LINK staff embarked on the annual GLINK retreat with the purposes of encouraging one another in truth, building on the relationships that have been growing since August or before, and dreaming and preparing for the future of GLINK whether in Clemson or in other locations! What a blessing it was to take a few days in the middle of December to encourage one another in Gatlinburg, TN.
As a first year GLINKer, I had no idea what to expect.  I anticipated long days filled with activities and meetings and I was slow to believe the veterans when they spoke of merely enjoying togetherness and sharing our hearts with one another.  Needless to say, I quickly fell into step with the other GLINKers as we embraced this four day relaxation process.   This entailed copious amounts of snacks, beautiful scenery, a cabin with games galore, and the people that we serve with day-in and day-out. 
What I didn’t realize was just how precious and valuable these friendships had become.  In the hustle and bustle of everyday office life, I fail to sit and reflect on just how beautiful these relationships are.  It is so easy to speak merely about tasks, rather than to ask deeper questions and learn about someone’s joys and struggles in ministry. 
Romans 15:14-21 set the pace for our retreat, reminding us that God is accomplishing His mission to bring His people to Himself and receive all of the glory in the process.  He is revealing His mission to His people by His grace and in the power of His Spirit! 
For I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me to bring the Gentiles to obedience—by word and deed,”  Romans 15:18
We met twice a day each day for a couple of hours to hear from each staff member, allotting them the time they needed to give updates on their personal life and their ministry.  This was such a sweet time of listening, praise, and prayer!  We were challenged to bear one another’s burdens as well as rejoice in the blessings of one another’s lives.  After each person was able to express what the Lord laid on their heart, the floor was open for the encouragement from brothers and sisters.  It was a beautiful time for people to speak into one another’s lives and attest to the work being done!  What a joy to live out Romans 15:18, to speak of Christ and His accomplishments, to rejoice in His work through each of our lives this fall, and to spur one another on in a lifestyle marked by grace. 
This opportunity was rare and rich.  It allowed each of us to stop and consider one another and to enjoy and cherish the people which with we work so closely.  It fostered prayer and community with the intent of refreshed hearts and revitalized ambitions as we resume life. 
Summarizing my feelings from this trip is very difficult.  I came away rejoicing for my co-laborers and recognizing what Godly, special people I brush shoulders with every day!  I look at my brothers and delight in their humor and tenderness for one another and the Gospel.  I respect our leadership and their care as they planned a week with the intent of loving us well.  Whether our staff are in India, leaving for India, or returning to Clemson, I can confidently say that Romans 15:20 rings loudly in each of our minds: 
“and thus I make it my ambition to preach the gospel…”
Let this be our ambition, our passion and our love, to preach the Gospel and to love the people that the Lord has entrusted to us for His glory.
Written By:  Sammi Fife