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I was reminded recently that you don’t have to attend a retreat to be on retreat with God. We should find time to retreat with the Lord daily, even if just for a few minutes.  I know that to be true, but over the summer I’ve gotten out of my habit of spending dedicated time with God.

This morning I sensed God nudging me to go out for a morning prayer walk.  Great idea!  As soon as my older son left for football practice, I went out to walk and talk with God.   I enjoyed that time so much! I thanked God for the beautiful surroundings of His world and all the beauty He created.  As I walked down the street from our house I prayed for the people in the homes I passed.  Then my thoughts took off on their own and I spent 20 wonderful minutes in the presence of God.

I prayed for the loved ones left behind by the soldiers who died on Saturday – and for all soldiers and military families. I thanked God for the surviving father of Aaron, one of the soldiers, who spoke about faith, God, Christ, and love of our country in his tv interview, and prayed for God to use his words to inspire others.  I prayed for relief and comfort for those suffering from famine and drought, and I prayed for those among us suffering from spiritual famine and drought.  I prayed for our church, our pastors and their families, our congregation.  My thoughts went on…

As I walked up the hill that leads to our house I was sorry to see that ‘our’ walk was coming to an end.  “Well, Lord,” I thought, “it’s time to leave this wonderful state of mind I’ve been in with you and get back to the reality of my day.”  At that moment my eyes fell upon the image of a cross on the sidewalk.  A twig and piece of mulch formed a wooden cross right there on the sidewalk.  What a great thing to see!  It was especially  touched to see it because God knows I take delight in seeing images of the cross in the world around me.  Seeing that cross at that moment was like getting a little gift from God to say He’d enjoyed our time together, too; and yes, it was time to get on with the rest of my day, but He would be with me.  Our time together wouldn’t end with the walk.

I took a photo of that cross on the sidewalk.  I wanted to remember that moment and keep that image as a reminder of how good it is to spend time with the Lord, and also for the reassurance that He is always with me.

God wants to be with each of us in all that we do.  He is there for us.  Are we there for Him?  I hope you’ll take a few moments in your day to retreat with the Lord.  As for me, starting today I’m getting back in the habit of doing so every day.

Happy are those who hear the joyful call to worship, for they will walk in the light of your presence, Lord.     ~ Psalm 89:15  (NLT)

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