A Word from Pastor Debby regarding her recent Sabbitical RPC Newsletter
Dear precious Rock Presbyterian Church family,
Many, many thanks to you all for the gift of my recent sabbatical. It was a wonderful time that I will never forget! I felt over and over during it that I had been given this precious gift of TIME – abundant, refreshing, restful – that so ministered to my own spirit and to my family also. I treasured being able to be with Don for worship, on vacation, and also at Batesburg-Leesville when he was preaching or teaching a Bible study there. I loved being able to fly with Don on Labor Day weekend to Chicago to visit our Ben and his wife, and to be there when they made an offer which was accepted on their first house! It was wonderful also to visit with my sisters and their children and grandchildren, and to go with my sister, Laurie, to visit aunts, uncles, and cousins up north. What a gift to reconnect with many family members, some of whom are not believers. I so valued my time of study also while on sabbatical. The “Soul Shepherding” conference in California in early August was excellent and such a special time for Don and me to enjoy together. Soul Shepherding offers four five day retreats, and this one was on “Relationally Healthy Leadership”, and was my second to attend. The retreat gave lots of helps for growing as a Christian leader, including how to hear from God, how NOT to burn out, following Jesus’ model of leadership, emotional intelligence, and working from a place of rest and grace instead of working to earn rest. Inspired from that conference, I read a book by Dallas Willard called Life without Lack (about Psalm 23). I also enjoyed studying about the Enneagram, which is a tool that helps you recognize your own personality style, strengths, and weaknesses, and how to invite the Lord into those places. I loved having lots of time with the Lord and open times of prayer, and enjoyed a “Spiritual retreat” at the Cove (the Billy Graham center near Asheville). It was such a gift to catch up at our house (much needed!) and to do some creative things there, as well as to have lots of time for walks and exercise. I enjoyed the time to be creative in the home. I did some study on youth curriculum and especially spent time praying for our youth and college students. I so missed them and so appreciated Drayson Youngblood, our youth leaders, and YUM leading while I was away!! There is lots more, but hopefully this gives you a taste of a wonderful time with the Lord, study, rest, and family. Thank you so much for being such a caring staff, session, and congregation that you would make the sacrifice to provide this wonderful time for me! God bless you all! I love you and am grateful to be back with you! Missed you when I was away! Let us continue to keep one another in prayer.
Warmly in Christ,