So, I know my blog is for essential oils, but I just HAVE to share my experience at a FamilyLife marriage retreat with you.
How many couples do you see who invest in everything else BUT their marriage? Sadly, way too many. People will save up their money for the latest video game console or iPad, but they won’t spend it on something that can truly improve their marriage.
My husband and I recently went to one of FamilyLife’s many “Weekend to Remember” retreats (for the 2nd time) and had a wonderful time learning about what makes a good marriage, all while enjoying the hilarious speakers (and an equally hilarious video on intimacy and SEX! The men loved it. haha) They had such down-to-earth, transparent speakers, who just told it like it is. It brought us tears and laughs and most of all, it brought us closer together by the end of the trip. A month later we renewed our vows with a bunch of other couples at a combined marriage renewal ceremony our church was having.
These retreats go on throughout the year, every year, all across the country. They have marriage experts, top speakers, fun couples merchandise (‘Discovery’ bedroom game – ooh la la) and tons of relationship books. It was like a mini getaway, and we so needed that!
We decided we would try it out, just to get away for the weekend and invest in what is the most important relationship we will ever have in our lives. Our marriage!
We haven’t had a vacation in a while, and while we are still happy after many years together (and the many trials and hard work!), we knew could always stand to learn something new. For some reason, staying in a hotel always seems to stir up romance – at least it does for me! Woo wooooo!
The retreat starts out at the hotel on a Friday evening, for the first/intro session of guest speakers. The 2 guest speakers at our retreat were AWESOME! So funny! One was a married couple, and the other was a married man whose wife doesn’t like to speak on stage so he spoke solo. We were laughing so much all weekend it was such a great release of those daily stressors.
Here’s us when we first got to the hotel room…feeling a little goofy and laughing hysterically at who knows what:
Saturday morning, after you have breakfast, you go to the morning session. Here’s our view during breakfast. So serene… (except for the goose that kept attacking another goose, because apparently the pond wasn’t big enough for the both of them! You can’t see them, but I swear to you, they are real):
After the morning session, they break for lunch. After lunch, there is an afternoon session.
Then they let you have the evening off to go on a “date night.” My favorite part!! You are supposed to make reservations somewhere ahead of time, and have a romantic evening with your spouse during that free time. We loved the restaurant we chose – maybe a little too much – because we came back to the hotel WAY too full to enjoy the rest of our romantic evening.
Sunday morning, after breakfast, there is a morning session. We skipped this one because it was a session where they split up the men and women, and you listen to designated speakers of your own sex. I am sure it was as great as the rest of the retreat, but we didn’t want to separate. God has done some intense healing in our marriage and we we’ve been feeling like newlyweds lately (sorry if it makes you gag…it is just great to feel so happy again). I am thinking we will stay for this part of the retreat next year for sure.
The stories we heard from the speakers were eye opening and touching. They told us of some couples at past retreats who came there with divorce papers in the car…and left feeling they should give their marriage another try. How beautiful is that? It is so worth giving it a try.
Here are some testimonials created by FamilyLife of real life couples who’ve benefited from these retreats:
Here’s an additional promotional video from FamilyLife – hilarious AND SO TRUE!:
We loved the retreat so much that we decided to become volunteers for FamilyLife, and spread the word about their retreats so that more couples can experience God’s restoration, revival and redemption of even the most broken of marriages. These retreats are by no means only for couples in trouble. It’s for anyone who wants to learn some tools that are helpful in having a successful marriage.
If you’re interested in investing in your marriage, or if you’re having marriage troubles, or if you just want to get away from the crazy kids for a weekend!!…you should definitely check it out for yourself. I highly recommend it! We will definitely be back again next year. With my volunteer status, I can save you $100 off registration, so it won’t be so hard on your pocketbook.
The PROMO CODE below will get you $100 off registration at any retreat, in any state, any year. This code will not expire as long as I continue as a volunteer with FamilyLife.
Just click the link below and type in this code: TwoAreOne
If you go, please be sure to come back here and leave me a comment. I’d love to hear your story, and/or if you loved it! I know from experience that God is a miracle worker, and He loves to restore marriages or spice them up, in order to glorify Christ!