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Personal Christian Retreat: An Outline for Spiritual Renewal

5. Listening

Don’t miss the opportunity to listen to God! Wherever you take this personal Christian retreat, noises are all around you. Music is all around you. People are discussing various topics, from sports to finance. The only thing you need to hear these voices is the proper receiver. A radio will suddenly usher into your presence a bevy of sounds.

Prayer operates the same way. God is constantly speaking to us, teaching us, leading us. The question is not whether God is speaking but if we are listening. God consistently speaks to us through his Word, but do we hear him? He occasionally speaks to us through circumstances and other people. He also speaks at times through the still, small voice of his Spirit. Are we listening?

6. Consecration

Consecration is a prayer of commitment to God. Often in Scripture believers made specific, fresh acts of consecration: Jonah in the whale’s stomach (Jonah 2:1–10); David, following his sin with Bathsheba (Ps. 51); Paul, our Lord and others. In our times of prayer, we are often confronted with the need to make a fresh, new commitment to God.

(NOTE: The section on prayer is adapted from Alvin Reid, Evangelism Handbook: Biblical, Spiritual, Intentional, Missional, B&H, 2009)

7. Journal

Take time to write in your notebook/journal. Write at any time along the way, but especially near the end write: lessons from Scripture, prayer requests, things you should do you believe the Lord is telling you, hopes and dreams, people to talk with, etc.

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Alvin L. Reid (born 1959) serves as Professor of Evangelism and Student Ministry at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, North Carolina, where he has been since 1995. He is also the founding Bailey Smith Chair of Evangelism. Alvin and his wife Michelle have two children: Joshua, a senior at The College at Southeastern, and Hannah, a senior at Wake Forest Rolesville High School. Recently he became more focused at ministry in his local church by being named Young Professionals Director at Richland Creek Community Church. Alvin holds the M.Div and the Ph.D with a major in evangelism from Southwestern Seminary, and the B.A. from Samford University. He has spoken at a variety of conferences in almost every state and continent, and in over 2000 churches, colleges, conferences and events across the United States.