Spiritual Formation Retreats
Good Works is a worshipping community! Our first focus is a ministry of worship unto the Lord. All we do is an expression of worship as an act of gratitude to God for the transformation He has brought about in our lives. We have for many, many years gathered weekly as a community to worship the Lord through song, scripture reading, prayer, and dialogue. Residents of Timothy House and other guests have joined us in the gatherings for worship.
We have also set aside annual retreats for the staff to examine our hearts and motives, to build up one another and to express our love for God through our unity.
Life Together is another one of our worship gatherings where people connected to the Good Works community of hope can come together for worship and a meal.
Good Works is a worshipping community!
We are now inviting groups into worship experiences called Spiritual Formation Retreats. For 2018 our focus will be “Knowing God in Personal Righteousness and Social Justice.” These are two inter-related aspects of a dynamic relationship with the God who redeemed us for Himself. He calls us to lives that demonstrate a hunger and thirst for righteousness, that seek after the kingdom of God. He also calls us to follow Him in bringing the kingdom of God on earth as it is in heaven, caring for those who struggle with poverty and isolation and even confronting the systems of the world that keep people in poverty.
Groups that come to Good Works for the Spiritual Formation Retreat will have the opportunity to engage in this through a variety of spiritual formation activities such as worship through song, Bible Study, dialogue, prayer experiences, solitude and shared meals.
Our objective through developing the Spiritual Formation Retreat is to create a context in which God can engage His people on a level that takes them deeper into righteousness and justice…that is, to take them deeper into loving and knowing God, “the creator of heaven and earth and all that is in them.”
One-Day Spiritual Formation Retreat
This experience begins at 8:30 and ends at 4:00.
Friday to Saturday Spiritual Formation Retreat
We have long sought to deepen the experience of our Friday Night Life sponsors. We discovered that by adding the Spiritual Formation Retreat, this creates a wonderful balance between the service of FNL and the worship of the Retreat. This begins on Friday at 4:00 and ends Saturday after lunch or after dinner depending on the availability of the group.
Weekend Spiritual Formation Retreat (Friday-Sunday)
This is our most intensive retreat experience that we currently offer to groups. This begins with Friday Night Life at 4:00 or after FNL at 8:00 and continues to Sunday morning 10:00.
The Spiritually Formative Enhanced Work Retreat
In this retreat experience we are adjusting the Work Retreat to include elements of the Spiritual Formation Retreat. We will create a structure in which half the group will be involved in service and the other half involved spiritual formation for the morning. In the afternoon, these groups will switch. The group will be all together at the beginning of the day, for lunch and at the end of the day.
The Elements of a Spiritual Formation Retreat
The overall theme of the Spiritual Formation Retreat will be “Knowing God in Personal Righteousness and Social Justice.” We will lead group to engage with this content through a variety of spiritual disciplines:
We will have time together as a group with GW staff for us to worship through song, scripture and prayer. These times a less about mentally examining the topic and rather offering a heart to the Lord of humbly submitting to His way in righteousness and justice. We will gather for worship at the beginning and the end of the retreat.
Here we will specifically focus on what scripture has to say about personal righteousness and social justice. We will examine what both the Old and New Testaments have to say about this.
Prayer will very much be an intentional element of all our retreats. One form of this will be the Prayer Hike. This will be a guided experience on the Good Works hiking trails. It will be a personal time of speaking with and hearing from the Lord in the context of a supportive group environment. We will also use guided meditation as another form of prayer.
We will be shaping several activities around helping us to delve into the significance of righteousness and justice.
This will be an opportunity to discuss how we are socially confronted with the issues of righteousness and justice. At times these can be divisive, but the goal here is not to convince others of our own perspective but to seek to understand the perspective of others.
Times will be set aside for group members to spend time in solitude to reflect on and journal about how God is speaking to them through the retreat experience.
It is important for us to reflect on how God spoke to us, both to confirm what God said to us personally and to share with others what God has revealed as a kind of prophetic word to the community. The primary time for this reflection or debrief will be during the final worship session.