Our family attends an amazing church. We're blessed with solid biblical teaching from our pastor, elders and Sunday school teachers. We're also remarkably blessed to have a church family that really interacts like family, supporting one another...rejoicing with those who rejoice and weeping with those who weep.
One of the events that contributes to the strong fellowship in our church is a family retreat each fall at Twin Lakes Christian Center in rural Iowa.
Last weekend about a hundred of us reveled in the opportunity to carry on this tradition.
Much of the great fellowship took place at meal times.
There was also plenty of time for outdoor activities, like walks in the brisk morning air. Tessa's friend, Aaron, joined our family for this year's retreat.
Joe can make a friend anywhere!
Four times during the weekend we gathered to be taught by one of our missionaries on the theme "Dying to Live" based on Luke 9:23 (see the verse at the top of our blog). Each time we gathered, we sang.
The many kids in our church were a great help in leading the singing.
Between teaching sessions there was a wide selection of recreation options, including tackling a climbing wall in the gym.
Some preferred to watch.
Water fun was another option.
Again, some preferred to watch.
A highlight of the retreat was the baptism of five of our church family by Pastor Dave.
Each them shared their story of having been saved and rescued by Christ.
For our family, our church family is a source of strength, stability and support. We love these people and relish this opportunity each autumn to renew our friendships while focusing on the greatness of our glorious God.