Our prayer each year at Winsome is that each woman who attends would encounter God's love in a very personal and unmistakable way. Kimberly Amici's Why Winsome? story demonstrates one of the many unique ways God answers that prayer.
I first heard about Winsome from Kim Hyland, the retreat’s founder, who I met at a blogging conference the year before. I loved the idea of having a weekend away from the busyness of life, not to learn how to be more successful or productive, but to rest and be encouraged. Once I found out a dear friend was going and I wouldn’t have to drive alone, I was in!
It was nothing like I expected. The idea of a few days to draw close to God and have authentic conversations with other women sounded wonderful in theory but wasn’t so great for me in practice. I struggled with the idea of a God that wanted to know me intimately. Unconditional love sounded good, but I lived in a world where my worth each day was dependent on what I brought to the table. I made some wonderful new friends, but I decided there was no way I was going back.
The following year, I got the email that it was time to register. I put it off until the last minute but eventually decided to go. This time I knew what I was in for, but I was ready. Instead of putting up walls of defense, I wrote down the lies that rose up inside me as each speaker spoke. And I stayed focused during worship hoping to gain revelation of the words being sung.
Speaker Jen Hand spoke directly to what I struggled with the year before.
You can't work your way into God's pleasure.
He already knows you; He's already called you.
You are His.
Despite being an extrovert, I didn’t stay busy in between sessions but instead spent time alone to read, pray, and let truth seep into my being. I allowed my heart to be transformed by God’s presence. My experience continues to produce good fruit in my life.
The Winsome retreat is truly a life giving experience, if you allow it to be. The location lends itself to peace and tranquility, while the truth that is spoken sows seeds of restoration and freedom.
We'd love to hear your Why Winsome? story! If you'd like to share it with our community, contact Emily Dean at firstname.lastname@example.org