Attending the Changed Women’s Retreat truly opened my eyes. I was extremely nervous, and to be honest, I felt like I was an outsider. I didn’t know anyone else going, and I didn’t think I was familiar enough with Scripture to belong. Looking back, I’m so grateful I decided to go.
Everyone was friendly, and it was easy to meet new people. The praise and worship was one of my favorite things, and every testimony that was shared touched me. The teachings were truly inspirational and made me want to be closer to God. But the real change happened in my quiet times.
My father didn't want a little girl in his life. He favored my brothers. It left me feeling abandoned. I was embarrassed when anyone found out he didn't want me. He passed away when I was 16, and even though I’m an adult now, I held onto all of the anger, resentment, and hate.
In my quiet times, God started talking to me about forgiving my dad. He showed me all the negativity that I’d let build inside me for so many years and asked me to give it all to Him. When I finally decided to give it to God, it felt as if a huge weight came off my shoulders. I completely broke down crying and released all the negativity. I forgave my dad.
Through conversations with other women, I also realized I wasn’t an outsider. That was a lie. Instead, I learned that every single person has a story. Everyone is truly broken. We all need Jesus.
At retreat, I made the decision to start looking at the positive things in my life rather than continue to dwell in the past. My feelings of resentment are truly gone. By forgiving my earthly father, I’ve restored my relationship with God, and it has changed my daily life. Before I get out of bed every morning, I pray. I make room in my schedule to have quiet time and journal. I’ve even become more involved in my church. The Changed Women’s Retreat truly changed my life for the best, and I will not be missing any future retreats!