We would like to introduce you to our guest, Cynthia Stone

By on May 4, 2011

Cynthia Stone, a respected member of Peaceful Grace Community Church in Brooksville, is a regular contributor to LB. She writes about everyday occurrences that involve her efforts to make her church the best in town. Cynthia claims that Upper Hillside Community, the other church in Brooksville, has a lukewarm congregation where the women have been known to cheat at cribbage. LB does not share the opinions expressed in her articles.

LADIES RETREAT!

What a fantastic time to be a woman at Peaceful Grace Community! All week long, the women of Peaceful Grace Community buzzed like honey bees to prepare for the Ladies Retreat. Yes, LADIES RETREAT!! It’s like Disneyland for Christian women over 45!  

Every year, more than two dozen giddy women from Peaceful Grace pile into minivans and head toward Camp Woodrow in the mountains. So rustic and quaint! It’s the perfect spot to share our feelings about faith, family and the other women who did not come. I love spending time in nature and living near God’s creation (excluding reptiles, bugs and rodents larger than a stick of butter). Just try to look at a baby raccoon and not want to take him home wrapped in a soft blue blanket. You can’t!

I do worry about leaving Glen all alone. When I’m gone, he tends to eat out a lot and watch every sport on the television. Sometimes he has his buddies over for a card game where they swap tall fishing stories. Men are so mischievous! Glen claims he likes when I go on these trips and says I should feel free to stay an extra day or two. He’s so supportive!

This year’s speaker at the retreat was Sharon McFarlan, author of 4 Lessons for a Spiritual You and 7 More Lessons for an Even More Spiritual You. (She plans to release all 11 lessons in one book called Maximum Spirituality – I can’t wait!) Sharon is such an inspiration! Afterward, I personally thanked her and told her it was nice to hear from someone who doesn’t use a lot of big words. I also told her it is so refreshing to have a speaker who hasn’t given into fashion peer pressure. “So what if your shoes don’t match your pants”, I said. “The Lord looks on the inside!” Unfortunately, Sharon had to leave and did not participate in the evening entertainment.     

After a yummy dinner of lasagna, pasta salad, egg salad, cheese bread, kidney bean salad and a 3-cheese quiche, we decided it was time for some fun! Janice Coleson came up with a great idea for a game. Using her Polaroid camera (they still make them!), we each took a picture of our bare feet and taped it to the wall. Then we went around and tried to guess whose feet belonged to whom. It was a hoot! Poor Connie Lipton was the only African-American on the trip so she was a dead give away! Sue Mannachek ended up winning but only because she knew that Karen Jones has a corn on her big toe. No fair! As a prize, Sue won a Thomas Kinkade calendar. So Jealous!

During the social coffee hour, we ate cheesecake, apple bars and peach cobbler while building life-long relationships. You learn so much about each other on these trips! For example, Barbara Knapp hates lime Jell-O and Donna Welsh has a tabby cat named Robert Redford! I love these women!

The only unfortunate part of the retreat was that we had to sleep in bunk beds. No one wants to sleep in the top bunk! It’s hard to get up there and usually requires a brave soul or two to hoist you up. The camp should provide pulleys and levers! (Maybe I’ll send a letter to the camp director) It can also be unsettling to sleep in the bottom bunk. I find it hard to relax under a sagging mattress held together by cheap chicken wire. It’s the reason I bring my blowup mattress! (My 30th anniversary present to Glen!)

I hear that Upper Hillside Community Church is having their ladies retreat at Mountain Spring Resort and Spa. How can they afford such a place?! I suppose some churches are loosey-goosey with their money towards women ministries. They could go to the Four Seasons in Hawaii for all I care. I doubt they will have as many laughs or as many cries (the good kind) as did the women of Peaceful Grace Community. I’ve learned you can’t buy true friendships, only comfort and really good food.

God Bless!
Cynthia Stone 

Cynthia Stone is a character from Roo Creations. You can contact them at [email protected].

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We would like to introduce you to our guest, Cynthia Stone