We held our first WeConnect Leadership Team retreat! The retreat took place at the beautiful and restful Gilead’s Balm in Salem, NH. The lovely, comfortable setting and the outstanding hospitality of our host, Marnie Wells, were the perfect facilitators for our time together.
This weekend was all about listening and learning … for me, at least! My primary goals were to absorb what these smart and godly young women had to say about their generation’s perspectives and to hear their ideas about how by design can better convey our mission and connect with millennials. At this point I should add a caveat: Everything you think you know about the stereotypical millennial? Throw it out the window. The reputation of being unreliable, entitled, and self-centered does not apply to these women. In every conversation, they proved themselves to be wise, godly, and humble.
We had extensive conversations about millennials’ felt need for mentors and about how mentor attitudes can either attract them or put them off. We also discussed ways that by design could engage better with millennials. Some of their insights included recommendations to update by design’s media style, increase our social media presence, look outside our regular “class” events to better reach the younger generation, and to address topics that are relevant to the millennial generation.
Your mentors are going to fail you, but we have to hold on to the bedrock of Jesus. That’s why there are church splits: being more dependent on people than on God. We are going to fail, but God will not. – Sarah
[The people who were influential in my life] didn’t have any particular expectation of me. They just wanted to know me. Like, “what does that mean to you right now in your life?” The non-intellectualness of it. Just life. – Kimberley
It wasn’t until I had a mentor in my life that I realized, “This is what I’ve always needed in my life.” – Jessi
[In a healthy mentoring relationship] you can see the mess and you can see the realness, and it’s genuine love. As a mentor, the same advice doesn’t fit everyone. There’s no “right” way of doing things. You have to be so in tune with the Holy Spirit. – Sarah
Our generation is aware of our own brokenness; we just feel that we have to hide it. And yet there is also a hunger to have that brokenness healed in us. – Kimberley
There is so much more that happened over the weekend, much more than I can share here. But I would love you talk with you about it! Please contact me if you want to hear more or if you want to pray specifically for the WeConnect ministry.
And thank you again, WeConnect supporters, for your faithful prayers and your partnership in this important ministry!
Keep hoping. Keep praying. Keep loving.
Kristi, for WeConnect
PS – If you’re looking for a retreat, either for yourself or for several women, I highly recommend Gilead’s Balm. Walk in the gardens. Rest in your well-appointed room or in front of the fireplaces in the common areas. Enjoy the delicious, nutritious, and beautiful meals served to you. Connect with God in whatever way you need to. You will find rest for your soul. http://www.comeinandrest.com/