By Linda Brumley
She did it again! Lynne (pictured at right) planned your Seattle staff women’s retreat with stunning insight into meeting our spiritual needs. Obviously, we believe we serve the women of the Seattle church best when we are spiritually healthy ourselves. Yet, we are acutely aware that we face the same struggles and temptations, time pressures and practical challenges as most our sisters. Being on staff makes us immune to nothing, but it does give us a fellowship that each of us treasures.
Respecting the insight of the women she leads, Lynne asked us each to teach a lesson (you’ll get to hear more about these lesson since she also asked us to write an article for this web site about the lessons we presented during our time together—stay tuned!). To make it fun (a trademark of Lynne’s) she titled each lesson after a recent movie.
Annie kicked us off with “Best of Show” subtitle: “best practices for mid-weeks.” Annie has stayed so lovingly in touch with the Eastside women’s talents and challenges, she has delegated leadership wisely and has, herself, taught in-depth Bible studies on different books of the Bible.
You won’t be surprised to know that Danielle spoke to us about the campus ministry. Her assigned topic: “Deep Impact”. She shared a lot about her visions for the UW campus and my favorite quote of the retreat came from Danielle: “Even if none of my dreams come true, I want to die a dreamer.”
AT, who with her husband Darin leads our teens, spoke on “The Matrix”. Sorting through complex issues of teen needs has been the obsession of Darin and AT’s hearts.
I got to address the whole idea of hospitality with the theme of “Julie and Julia.” I had such fun passing out ingredients and recipes and watching my sisters serve one another with their culinary creations. I referenced how conversation over food was such a part if Jesus’ ministry and then had everyone comment on the value of food with fellowship (Acts 2:42ff).
Karla reminded us of the how blessed we are to have so many needs met through our spiritual friendships. Carol assured us that God is truly Almighty to meet the needs we cannot meet for one another. We each tried to put into words what God means to us.
Lynne shared with us her Bible study on dreaming. It was a lesson she repeated for our Sister’s Night Out on Friday evening (hope you were there). Here’s the thing about Lynne’s insights into the Bible: I could study the same passages and never make the same applications Lynne makes (true in some measure about all of our different viewpoints and why it’s so valuable for all of us to share our thoughts from our own study of the Word). After hearing Lynne’s lesson for the second time, I thought: “I wish I could hear this lesson a dozen other times and maybe even then I’d want an encore! What a blessing God has given the women of the Seattle church in Lynne’s leadership.
Plus, Lynne brought in Alison Stirret to sharpen our computer skills. Alison is amazing and this in-service training is a huge boost to us. She is smart, funny, easily communicates her vast knowledge on a level that we can grasp (Ok, I admit I can’t quite grasp it all, but I leave smarter than when I came).
For all the women of the Seattle staff, I want to say to each of you, we love you! We want to serve you better and better and this yearly retreat offers us a boost that our regular staff meetings never could. So, thank you for supporting us as we seek to grow to be an increasing blessing to all of you!