Come on the train with me this beautiful, sunny Sunday afternoon!
Every year we do something for our JV women, to care, bless and love on them. I've been leading those retreats for years now, and every single one is different. Including the one we're headed to today!
When I started leading JV ladies retreats, there were only a few of us back then. And in fact, at the first one I ever led I had Claire with me as a baby!
Today, our team has grown so much that we don't ever meet with all the ladies who serve in JV. Rather we meet in different groupings so that it feels intimate and special, meeting, I pray, the needs of each woman.
This year's grouping for JV ladies retreat is in countries or teams, as is the case for our group of women. These are all women who are serving with or connected to the iTeam, the ones who care for and resource all of the JV missionaries across Central and Eastern Europe from our offices in Frydlant.
Each of these women have a unique role, with some serving Fusion, some serving Edge sports, some in administration and others in communications. Some have husbands who work in the office, and then there is Amy Ellenwood and I who serve in our leadership roles of JV women's care and JV Kid care.
Claire is on this team too, but didn't ride the train with us today because she had junior high youth group at our church this afternoon, so arrived by car later on.
But the rest of us enjoyed a relaxing train ride across the country to southern Moravia, to the town of Mikulov.
It was an incredibly beautiful afternoon as we arrived, and then took a fifteen minute walk to our hotel.
When Amy and I were thinking about our women and what would bless them, we decided a night away to a beautiful place where we could talk, share, pray and learn together would be just right.
We have driven by this town literally dozens of time as it's on our regular route down to Vienna and on to Croatia. But because we're always on our way somewhere else, we never stop! But knowing that it's a special town, we chose to come here for our ladies retreat.
We'd never seen the hotel; just did our research online and found this one. It turned out to be a really darling place, perfect for our ladies.
In the evening we headed down to their wine cellar (southern Moravia is wine country) and enjoyed a wonderful meal together in a space all to ourselves.
After the meal we gathered around on the benches and Amy shared from the Word, and led us in a time of sharing. It was so special to hear each woman speak from her heart about what God is working out in her life.
These women serve the Lord with all their hearts, and give of themselves daily for the sake of the Lord's work here. I'm glad to be away with them for a time of joyful refreshment and sweet fellowship together!