Tag Archives: personal retreat

Jesus Invited, “Come and Play.”

AFTER OUR MORNING SESSION, I returned to my room. I placed the rose Tish gave me the night before upon my bed and turned on the small battery-operated candle. It’s soft glow flickered in the darkened room. I knelt beside the bed and asked Jesus to fill me. To speak into my heart.

What do You want me to learn today? What is Your agenda for this next portion of my personal retreat?

A vision from my childhood emerged. It was faint and fuzzy at first, but then quickly zoomed into focus. Within seconds, it encompassed my entire mind’s view.

I saw a pasture I ran through as a little girl. Clover and purple thistles dotted the rectangular field of vibrant green grass lined with wire farm fence and gnarly brambles. At the end of the field, I could see a small opening almost hidden between grown up sycamore trees and fence row brush. In this opening, the fence was scrunched down from me climbing over it to get to my friend Ann’s house.

In my vision, the sun felt warm – not hot – but warm on my bare arms.  I wore orange peddle-pushers and a flowered sleeveless top. A gentle breeze wafted through my tousled hair. Warm golden light surrounded me as my bare feet ran carefree across the soft carpet of grass toward the opening at the end of the field. The grass felt moist and spongy beneath my feet as I dodged piles of sheep dung. Occasionally, I didn’t dart fast enough and the coolness of a round, soft manure pile squished between my toes. I giggled and squealed, “ee-uuu,” all at the same time.

I could sense I was not alone. Yet, I was the only one running.

The blue sky above held puffy white clouds; the kind where you lay on your back looking up to find images of dinosaurs, puppies, and butterflies. The kind that bring awe and wonder as they float suspended overhead while you watch them drift by; mixing and changing into the next recognizable image.

Various sounds surrounded me. Goldfinches chirped their glorious songs from the top wire of the fence. Momma sheep bleated warnings to their mischievous little lambs who responded with boisterous “baa’s.” Occasionally, I heard the hum of an airplane high in the sky in route to its final destination.

And laughter  –  My laughter  –  It rang everywhere.

I delighted in the warmth that encompassed me. My arms swung free, my legs carried me swiftly, and I felt joy. My face tipped upward to soak in the sun’s golden rays. That feeling of being carefree remained. No agenda. No chores. They were done, and I was heading toward the end of the field where I would climb the scrunched fence and come out through the brambles at the top of the hill. I didn’t sense I was going to Ann’s, just crossing the field toward the opening at the other end.

This vision appeared so quickly. Peace permeated my body. I relaxed and enjoyed the moment.

After spending a brief time within the vision – just long enough to feel carefree, happy, and warm – it  faded. The edges around the vision turned from gray to black, and then disappeared from sight.

I tried to recall it.  Yet when I did recapture the vision of the pasture, it was covered with a darkened filter. I could see through the brownish-gray filter, but the warmth and golden feeling was gone. No laughter. No me running. Just a grayed picture of the field.

In the midst of  the emotion of experiencing this childhood memory, I cried.

Why was I reliving this memory? What was its significance? Was He gifting me with a feeling of joy I hadn’t felt in a long time? Did my childhood represent being cared for? Being loved? Being protected? As a child, I had no worries or cares. Was Jesus inviting me to “come and play” like I did so many times with my friend Ann who lived on the other side of the fence at the end of the pasture?

Yes.  That was it!

As I thought the words “come and play”, a momentary resolution hit me.

On this day, Jesus was inviting me to “come and play.”
To come have fun with Him.
And I accepted.

The next several hours were spent exploring, talking,  and hanging out with my divine friend. We shared a day filled with warmth and joy, and it felt good. I became a child once again. A feeling I will treasure forever. The experience I will never forget.

How about you? When was the last time you felt like a child? Carefree. No worries. When was the last time you heard Jesus say, “Come and play. Let’s have fun?”

Be still and listen close.

He may be extending that invitation to you today. And if He does, take Him up on it. You won’t regret it.

“A happy heart is good medicine and a joyful mind causes healing,…” (Proverbs 17:22, AMP)

Prayer:  Dear God, Thank you for this day with Jesus. Let each of us answer the invitation to become a child again. To laugh. To be burden free. To experience the joy and innocence of the age. May we never become some busy, we can’t take the time to spend an afternoon with you. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.

SHARE A COMMENT:  Share a time when you felt joy. When you felt Jesus calling you to put aside the cares of the world and spend time with Him. I’d love to hear from you. You can enter your comment at the bottom of this page.

Slow Dance with Jesus was 24 Hour Personal Retreat I attended hosted by Letitia Suk, Life Coach. To find out more about personal retreats, visit Tish's website http://letitiasuk.com/retreats.html, or read her book Getaway with God which can be purchased on Amazon. You may contact me if your interested or have more questions. sbaker2107@gmail.com.
Clover picture by Pixabay and Susbany.