Hi, my name is Nora and chances are if you come to a retreat at Black Rock Retreat, you will not see me. Those of us in Guest Services that do reservations tend to be the voice of Black Rock Retreat rather than the face!
In the last few months, I have really been thinking about my role in the Guest Services Department. Foremost in my mind is the thought that Black Rock Retreat is a ministry, but does what I do count as a ministry and more specifically, is it my ministry?
We have all heard stories at the annual banquet and in the newsletter of children and teens who have given their lives to Christ and been impacted by the ministry of Black Rock Retreat’s Summer Camp or Outdoor Education programs. Which is amazing. What you rarely hear however, is the impact that Black Rock Retreat has on guests that have attended with a group that arrives with their own agenda and program.
As I was contemplating the ministry aspect of the Guest Services Department, God brought to mind Morrow Graham. She is the mother of American evangelist Billy Graham, one of the world’s most well-known preachers. Billy Graham certainly has been blessed with an amazing ministry. While I couldn’t find any statistics that stated how many people have heard the Gospel message through Billy’s ministry, I heard God speaking to me that Morrow has been a part of every single encounter that millions of people have had with the Lord through her son’s ministry. Her ministry to love, pray, discipline and raise her son has left a legacy that has touched millions of people.
I rarely get to see the fruit of what the group leaders are harvesting, but, one thing that I am certain of is that the care I take to help each group effectively plan their retreat, is also creating a legacy. Lives are being touched. Parents, siblings, friends, coworkers, and neighbors are being impacted and changed in ways that are touching the lives they go back to. Guests are being fed, spiritually renewed and uplifted by having the opportunity to come away to spend time with the Lord.
Yes, if a man prays to God on retreat in the woods and nobody’s around to hear him, it makes a sound that will be loudly heard by our Lord and by generations to come! Yes, this is a ministry and yes, this is my ministry! A ministry of preparation, support, encouragement and service and I wouldn’t have it any other way.