As our annual Selah retreat draws near, I am reminded of how essential extended time in community with others is to our Oneness. It's as though the Spirit does something profound in us as we simply unplug from the pace of our everyday lives and retreat together in an incredible place. Selah is our annual community-wide retreat that takes place in the scenic Marin Headlands. It's a weekend filled with friend-making, delicious food, playfully competitive games, breathtaking hikes, and much more. It's an experience carefully designed with just the right amount of structure that is fit for the entire family. Click here to read more about Selah and/or to register. Brian Jones is one of the biggest, most outspoken ambassadors for Selah. For him, this is a weekend intentionally set aside to encounter God and each other. He wouldn't miss it and he doesn't want you to either. Take a read of his impassioned plea:
Let me read your mind…
It’s too expensive – I can’t afford it. It’s too long. I’m really busy right now. The weekend is my only chance to catch up on stuff around the house. I can’t stand “bunking” with a bunch of other people in a large room on a small bed. I’m introverted – being around a bunch of people I don’t know makes me uncomfortable. I don’t really know people at Open Door, I’d be by myself – who would I talk to for two days … I’ll go next time. I’ll go when I have more money. I’ll go once I know people better.
These are myths, deceptions deliberately put in your mind by the Enemy. Not outright lies, mind you. He knows those would be readily identifiable and overcome. But these myths have seeds of rationality behind them, are thus believable, and therefore become “truths” to us.
For example, “It’s too expensive.” or “I don’t have the money for it.” Myths. We all have money for things that we prioritize. I see and hear it every day. And so do you. If it’s a priority, if it’s emotionally important or significant to us, we find the money for it.
Selah matters because it is a declaration that our lives and choices will not be dictated by the concerns of this world or by the myths and deceptions of the Enemy, but by the Values of the Kingdom of God.
Selah is a necessity because it is in this brief weekend that we get to experience the blessing and privilege of living in community as illustrated in Acts 2 & 4. As Jer might say, “we flourish because we are dedicated to the flourishing of others.”
If nothing else, Selah is a choice to sacrifice what I want, what I think is best for me, or what is comfortable for me, and to focus on benefiting others. It’s a tangible, actionable way to walk in the way of being a disciple of Jesus by laying myself and my personal concerns down.
Selah is a non-negotiable for me. It’s a unique opportunity to build life-sustaining friendships, to get to know others on a deeper level, to step away from the noise of everyday life and hear what God is saying – and in so doing, to refocus, get recharged, encouraged, and re-energized.
***My hope is that you will go. If you’re on the fence, my hope is you will choose to go – or at least find me at the next gathering and talk to me about your hesitation. If you’ve already chosen not to go, my hope is that you will reconsider – prayerfully ask yourself why you’re choosing not to go…and if it’s based on your wants and needs over the needs of others who just might need you to be there that weekend.***
I know one thing for certain. If we’re serious about being disciples of Jesus it means we must be a community that is united and considers the needs of one another above our own needs. Selah is a perfect springboard for making what we’ve been dreaming, visioning, and talking about a reality.