We live in a world full of trouble and strife, yet with God, we can find shelter—a place where we’re safe from harm. This was the perfect theme for our Fall Women’s Retreat. We compared Psalm 91 to passages from all over the Bible, discovering the wonderful ways God shelters us. Even when we have to go through troubled times, He protects our hearts and minds and walks through difficulties with us.

We began with introductions and what we each hoped to receive from the weekend. With four younger women, two “middlers,” and three “more experienced” ladies, our needs varied. Single, divorced, married with children, and widowed—each of us needed God’s shelter and a refreshing from His Word. And He most definitely supplied! We explored five reasons why we need sheltering: for physical safety, healing, emotional safety, time away for training, and being apart from others for study and prayer.

We ate a lot, laughed, filled up on inspiring and challenging scriptures, cried, ate some more, walked, played games, and worshiped. The weather was crisp and the Ranch alive with vibrant fall colors.  

Our three sessions on Saturday focused on Psalm 91.

Session one: Sheltering in God

  • How does He care for us and what are we supposed to do?
  • Why is resting in God dependent on our willingness to dwell in Him?
  • He covers and protects us like a mother hen. How does it feel to be so very loved?

Session two: God’s Got Me 24/7

  • If the words of this psalm are true, then why do Christians still suffer from disease, tragedy, and disaster?
  • Letting scripture interpret scripture, we looked to Isaiah 43:1-3 and Daniel 3:10-29
  • Can we still trust in God, even when we do have to go through the fire?

Session three: God’s Promise for Believers

  • What is God looking for in His people?
  • What are the rewards if we do these things?
  • How do we know and acknowledge His name?
  • How has God answered your cry for help recently? (I wish I could tell you all the great stories each of these women told of God’s incredible provision through some very tough times!)

Sunday morning worship was a perfect ending for the retreat. We sang songs about God’s sheltering love to videos with lyrics and beautiful images (thanks Marlie and Kourtnie for getting them on the television screen). My favorite was “Shelter” by Vertical Worship! Tears flowed and we ended, clean and blessed. After that, we looked at a few examples from the Bible of people who sought shelter. If you’d like to join in the blessing, here they are:

  • Exodus 9:18-21—those who had faith to believe God and sought shelter were saved
  • Deuteronomy 32:36-39—false gods offer no shelter
  • Psalm 27:1-5—David sought God’s shelter in every difficulty
  • Psalm 31:19-20—God will protect us when people falsely accuse
  • Psalm 55:6-8—David’s version of “Calgon, take me away!” when you need an escape
  • Psalm 61:1-4—God provides a high Rock (tower) of escape when we are overwhelmed
  • Isaiah 58:6-11—we are called to give shelter to others as God has cared for us
  • Jonah 4:5-11—can we take shelter in God’s provision and not care about others?
  • Matthew 17:1-5 (also Mark 9:2-7; Luke 9:28-35)—it’s easy to want to stay with Jesus on the mountaintop, but He has work for us to do
  • Revelation 7:13-17—there will come a day when God’s faithful ones will be forever in His sheltering presence!

I hope you’ve enjoyed joining us long distance. Hopefully next time you can be there in person. Our time there was too good not to share with more than just our small group. If you believe in Jesus and are following Him, these words of comfort are for you. Take heart in them and praise God today for His wonderful care.