This was another great year at the Barakel’s men retreat. After the relaxing day of fishing, I checked in and discovered my group would be staying in one of the brand new lodges. We headed over, unpacked, and settled in.
Out speaker for the weekend was Tom Harmon, you can check out his web site here. Friday night we found out the Tom would be preaching on the topic of prayer over the course of the weekend, and I was excited about the topic.
Then you count to 3 and jump off.
After the zip line we we headed back to the chapel for more teaching on prayer. Tom has recently written a new book. I purchased a copy, and he personalized my copy with his signature and a written statement in the front of the book. Tom’s preaching style is fast, full of wit, and he tends to hit a lot of different points as he examines the Word. He talked about the importance of prayer during that first chapel, gave some good quotes I jotted down:
From Charles Spurgeon: I’d rather teach 1 man to pray than 10 to preach.
Prayer is coming to God and believing he is there.
Prayer is the escape route for temptation.
After an attempt at fishing on the lake (with lots of rowing in circles), we headed back to shore for some dinner. On Saturday, there is usually a special dinner and we waited while the kitchen staff put together a great meal.
Probably my favorite chapel time for the weekend was when Tom presented us with four prayers we could pray on a daily basis:
1. Lord, teach me to pray.
2. Lord, please give me wisdom. (James 1:5)
3. Lord, please give me grace. (2 Cor 9:8)
4. Lord, keep me from evil. (John 17:15)
My favorite quote from the remaining chapel services talked about stepping out side your comfort zone and went something like this:
Do things that force you to do what you should be doing anyways.
Also one of the chapel services focused on the idea of prayer should be coupled with waiting. One of the concepts that I took away from these messages is that waiting can be equated to trusting. If you do not wait, then you are not trusting that you will get an answer.
I definitely had a lot to ponder as I walked out of the chapel Saturday night, and headed back to the dorm.
It was another great year at Barakel, and I am so glad I was able to go. I walk away this year with a renewed interest in improving my prayer life as well as a weekend full of memories.