“I came into RECESS with a broken relationship with God. After a rough year of losing my mom and then the knockout punch of miscarrying our baby a couple of months ago, my relationship with God was in need of some major healing. We were still friends, but it was like we had had a fight and needed to work through that awful, uncomfortable conversation of reconciliation. RECESS was that for me.
Through RECESS, I felt Him pursue me and speak to me. He offered healing while speaking words of affirmation over me and anointing me to carry that flame forward (Isaiah 61 – I now know how to comfort those who mourn). He reminded me of the ways I have encountered His presence, and He rekindled that flame within me to burn with passion and pursuit of Him. He brought me to my knees in awe and opened my hands and heart to a full surrender.
I feel a newness in me – a boldness and confidence of who He is in me and who He made me to be. He reminded me that my voice matters and should be heard, not for me, but ALL for His glory. And now I’m standing here believing again that the Lord is enough. I feel known by Him again, like a treasure in His eyes. I hear Him saying, ‘Just listen and obey.’ I respond, ‘Alright, it’s all Yours, Lord.’ And we dance.” – Shantelle, 35
“Before my RECESS journey, I was in a place of wanting more of God, but I didn’t really know how or why or when or to what end. I was pursuing Him, but I was just dipping my toes in the water and didn’t know what else there was for me in Him.
Through RECESS, He has raised the tide! He’s turned the river not only into a rushing river but into a flourishing heavenly pool that I can just go and run and jump into. His Spirit isn’t just living in me anymore, but He is bursting out of me! I now know my inheritance. I know my God. I have a hunger to spend my days with Him, and I feel like I could just worship forever (and I can’t wait to)!
Through RECESS, God filled me, fueled me and lit me of fire. And though I’m so full, I am still SO hungry for Him, which is new – which I love. I’m excited to light everyone around me and to see what more He has in store.” – Kara, 25
“When I started RECESS, I was tired, striving, gritting my teeth through life, burdened and insecure. Through RECESS, God has given me permission to throw off all my burdens and to just delight in Him. He’s taught me that it’s okay to be me – that He really does delight in me, so much so that He would actually choose to be one with me!
One of the most significant things I realized was that when I walk into a room, Jesus walks into the room, too – because He is with me and He is one with me. That revelation of His presence was life-changing, and it caused a lot of my insecurities to fall off. Why should I be worried when Jesus goes with me?
I now feel like I have peace and the tools I need to walk close with Him. I feel like I have permission from God to pursue the right things – to not stress and control but to just worship and delight in Him because that’s actually what brings His glory to the earth, not just me trying harder. I have more hope and peace for greater degrees of glory for myself and for those around me. And I just feel more free from myself! Through RECESS, I’ve realized that He really is better than I think He is, and I’m excited to see His glory and goodness continue to unfold!” – Katie, 34
“When RECESS started, I was tired. I felt like I had lost my passion, and I was worn out. I felt like I was just trying not to drown in the circumstances that were happening in my life. I knew the Lord was with me in what was happening and that He was strengthening me, but I realize now that I wasn’t going to the throne room to access my inheritance. I was trying to muscle through it on my own, and in that, I was partnering with the enemy in anxiety and many times in depression.
But this month really has changed me. RECESS has been a cold drink of water in a desert. I have a better understanding of the way the Lord loves me. I previously only understood His love as fact – never had I really associated real feelings for me in His love. But now I know how He feels for me. I encountered it – I encountered His love, and it has changed me. It has given me the willingness, courage and strength to trust Him and take risks – to love on Him as He leads me to, no matter what the crowd might think.
I now know He LOVES me – He really, really loves me and has my back. And the fruit of it is this: I feel whole, strong, confident and secure again in Him.” – Melissa, 33
“Through RECESS, God told me, like Martha, ‘Your life is filled with good things. Now let Me show you the better thing.’ He said, ‘You have not, because you ask not,’ and this freed me to ask for bigger and bolder things. He shifted my eyes upward, off myself. He constantly reminded me of His great love for me and His desire to be full in me. He reaffirmed my heart for praise, and He made me want to be that person that jumps at the chance to pray for others.
Through RECESS, I’ve been confronting the silence that I’ve allowed to consume me over the years, and I am watching as God opens my heart and my mouth to the more of Him – to His constant presence and His joy. I know that He wants to shower His children with good things and that He will answer in His time.
God directed me to RECESS – I know that He wanted me there. And while I’m still unpacking His purpose for me in it, He has given me a picture of what my life and purpose are moving forward. He showed me what it will be like, not just to grow older but to grow closer and closer to Him with each passing year. He reassured me that when I meet Him face to face in glory, His face will be so sweetly familiar – that of my dearest friend and my strong tower. That is my hope and confidence, and I trust Him to continue to work it out in me.” – Peggy, 59
“John 10:10 says, ‘I came so that you may have life and have it to the full.’ Isn’t that so beautiful? And yet so often this isn’t true for our lives. We struggle, we are enslaved or captivated by so many things of this world, and so many of us who live out our lives calling ourselves Christians don’t have lives that reflect that full life. We believe in a victorious God and yet we do not live victoriously.
This was true for me. I have been following Jesus from a young age and have experienced that full life in many ways. But then several years ago, a painful event turned my life upside down. It was hard. As I continued my walk with God, I battled. These years were marked with an eating disorder, shame, struggle, barriers to people even my husband. On top of that, I suffered from night terrors that happened every single night since the event. So as you can see, I was certainly not experiencing the fullness of life Jesus promised us.
But God was at work in me. Entering into our first RECESS meeting, my heart raced. There was no way in this intimate setting that I could get by without sharing my story. I was certain that when they found out about what I struggle with they would ask me to leave. Yet, I sat there and listened to the message of God’s real and intimate love for me, I was knocked right out of my shame. I had worn my past as a scarlet letter, believing I was damaged goods, unusable by God, defined by my past, limited by my mess. Yet God yearned for me to understand His love, His refreshing love. A love that covers us completely and perfectly.
I kept coming every morning. I sought His face. I learned about His character and how to fight. Through prayer and worship, we fought together. We fought for freedom in confidence that the victory was already our through Him. We believed and we prayed, and the result was this: I watched healing start to happen in every area of my life. First, it came in my dreams, and then it started to domino into my marriage and into the way I view myself and my battles. I will never forget the first night I didn’t have a night terror.
It’s crazy to me how God has led me into this freedom. There is truly so much more I could say about this and what God has done for and taught me this past month through RECESS, but in short, it’s this: God has used RECESS to propel me into the John 10:10 life He always meant for me to have. He has shown me that I AM holy and meant for so much more. I now have this assurance of how He sees me and all that is available to me because of that, and I have the tools I need to live in it and to go from one degree of glory to the next. I can’t wait to see what life looks like as I live in this assurance and knowledge. To God be the glory. He heals. He hasn’t left or forgotten. He brings even dry brittle bones to life. He restores. Amen!” – Kirsten, 29