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Hey Friends!

You may remember last weekend I traveled to Shipshewana, Indiana to speak at Chapel Pointe’s Women’s Retreat. (Sorry I didn’t post sooner ~ but with my crazy week, you understand). I can’t let the retreat pass by without sharing a glimpse of God’s goodness and faithfulness!

The women from Chapel Pointe were incredible! They were gracious, beautiful, fun, authentic, warm and sharp! I loved every minute of my time with them!

I also love when God surprises me with fun “God appointments”. Here’s one example (of many!)

My new friend Brenda (see picture below). Brenda introduced herself to me because she is related to my pastor. However, we soon discovered that she knows my childhood bff JJ from Kokomo, Indiana (who now lives in Lancaster, PA) ~ but Brenda lives in Grand Rapids like me. How crazy is that? Plus her mom works at RBC (where I was filming my testimony last week). Isn’t God fun?! 🙂

My topic for the weekend was “From the Inside Out”. If you’ve spent any time here at *She Sparkles*, you know I’m pretty passionate about living “from the inside out”. I get so discouraged by the media, the culture, the world…that tells us that happiness, joy, contentment, and freedom comes from the outside in.

You know how it goes….that stinkin” when/then” thinking ~

When I lose a little weight,
When I get the right job,
When I get married, then I’ll be satisfied.

When my husband starts communicating more, or
when we have more $$,
and of course, when I fit into my skinny jeans again then I’ll be happpy.

Can I just tell you, skinny jeans do not equal happiness, regardless of what Sara Rue wants to say!

The truth is our outside circumstances will never bring us true freedom, will they?!

Regardless of the best job, smallest pants size, biggest bank account, most adoring husband, and/or well behaved kids ~ none of it will satisfy the deep longings of our heart.

Only Jesus 🙂

Let me tell you, the women at Chapel Pointe are committed to living “From The Inside Out”!

The 3 Amazing Retreat Coodinators (Alecia, Sarah & Heather) did an incredible job of creating a welcoming, safe, and fun environment for the women. This great team thought through every detail! Wow!

Over our 3 days together, we studied the Scriptures, we sang, we laughed, we cried, we hugged, we prayed….and we saw a glimpse of God at work in our midst!

I wish I could put into words what God did…but words just wouldn’t do it justice. Just know God used YOU and YOUR PRAYERS to change lives for His Kingdom, and I am humbled and grateful.

What a blessing to have women share things like, “Cindy, I just want you to know this weekend was life-changing! I spent 2 hours on the phone with my husband last night crying. I won’t go home the same person. This retreat has changed me for the better“. Only God.

Holocaust survivor and author Corrie ten Boom is quoted as saying, “When people come up and give me a compliment—’Corrie, that was a good talk,’ or ‘Corrie, you were so brave,’ I take each remark as if it were a flower. At the end of each day I lift up the bouquet of flowers I have gathered throughout the day and say, ‘Here you are, Lord, it is all yours.’

Would you join me as I hand over this beautiful bouquet to the Lord. He is so faithful, good, powerful, and true?! I am in awe of what He is able to do!!

Have you been to a Women’s Retreat lately? What was your favorite part? Did you leave with a special “takeaway”? And Chapel Pointe friends (if you’ve stopped by) what was one of your takeaways from our retreat? I’d love to hear from you!!!

Thanks so much for your faithful friendship on *She Sparkles*! You all bless me so much!!

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