Proverbs 31 Online Bible Studies Retreat Scholarship {& how you can win it}

P31_LOGO1I pinch myself everyday that I get to do ministry as part of the Proverbs 31 Ministries team.

I get to write online devotions and coach writers (and wanna-be-writers) through our COMPEL membership site. We have a conference each summer. We pray for prayer requests that come in each week. And while we are participating in these activities, the dozens of speakers, staff, and board members get to do life together daily, desperately trying not to make a name for ourselves, but to glorify God.

One of my most favorite parts of P31 is our Online Bible Studies. Melissa Taylor and her team lead tens of thousands of women online helping them to grow in their relationship with Jesus. Their commitment, energy, and creativity never cease to wow the socks of me.

Check out this short video from our P31OBS coordinator, the fabulous Nicki Koziarz with some super exciting news.  If you can’t see the video, click here.

Yes folks, this year, P31 Online Bible Studies is holding a getaway retreat September 19-21 in Asheville, NC at The Cove in the Billy Graham Training Center. {Click here for details} I so badly wanted to go but it is homecoming weekend that weekend for our youngest son, a junior in high school. And since I want to live my priorities, my priority that weekend will be to stay home and cook a fancy-pants dinner for my son and about seven of his friends who will be all gussied up and ready to go to the homecoming shin-dig.

Sooooooo……since I can’t go, I’m sending one of you instead! {Please note that the scholarship does not include airfare or transportation to the retreat. You’ll need to get your sweet little self there.}

Now, to win this scholarship, or to win it for someone else, please leave a comment here telling us why you would like to be chosen. And please make sure first that it is possible for you to attend the retreat so the scholarship doesn’t go unused!

You have until Friday at 8 a.m. EST to enter when the winner will be announced both here on my blog and on my Facebook page.

Ok…..now why should you—or someone you know—-be chosen to attend the P31OBS retreat?

 

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  • I would be thrilled to have this opportunity! P31 and OBS have been life changing, soul saving resources for me this year. I have “met” compassionate, loving, inclusive, Christian women online. Women who I can and have bared my heart and soul to, who I have had an opportunity to support and pray for. How amazing would it be to meet some of them “in the flesh” ? What a gift it would be to attend this conference! I pray who ever is selected is blessed with an incredible, restorative and faith affirming weekend!

  • I would like to nominate Adele Spil for this retreat. I know her as my leader of love god greatly online bible study. She is such an encourager & wants to learn more & more about our God! Please consider her for this.
    Thank you,
    Pam Bolton

  • Dear Jesus, where do I begin? I am a woman who feels so let down by life. I only want one thing, a good Christian man and children who follow Christ. Out if all I could ever possibly ask for, that would be it on this earth anyway. I have looked forward to this retreat, knowing I do not have the means to go financially, nor would my husband let me spend an ounce if HIS money on something so, well, I’ll leave his words out. Bit I have felt from the moment I found out about the opportunity to not only spend time with other believers, they would be those souls that I have come to love in Christ over the past year and a half or so of the best Bible studies ever. I am from group 13, Cheryl May is my leader and what a blessing that woman has been to my life. It’s hard to tell these things so please, as I cry, just smile for me, knowing God has plans. When I saw this a few minutes ago, I got so excited I yelled out OMG. Can u believe it. god has made a way. He started to fuss saying how stupid it was, that I wasn’t worried about anyone but myself. I of course yelled back why don’t I deserve to go spend a weekend with those who make me smile because I can’t at home? People who love me for me, not what I can do for them. All of a sudden, calmness. As I listened to the video, nicki koziarz always makes me smile, I began to just let go, and if I could please, I believe if God wants me there, I will be. So I’m leaving it at that. And please, I don’t want anyone thinking bad of the hubby. But a person without The Holy Spirit could not POSSIBLY understand how important this would be to someone like me. Love u Karen and all of u at p31 ministries. One day, I pray God could use me as He has y’all. Much love and God bless. Praise Jesus for whomever should be blessed with this wonderful weekend of Jesus loving women.

  • I do not “deserve” to win this opportunity but I would certainly love the chance to get away for the weekend to dream with God and fellowship with my sisters in Christ. After 6 years pursuing my education while working in ministry at a pregnancy resource center and raising my two kids, I am now at the end of a very long road. I have graduated with my Master’s degree, spent a great summer with my kids and now it is time to work on me! I am desperately trying to focus on the dreams that God has planted in my heart and could really use some time to focus on Him. I feel His calling on my life and I am so ready to hear His voice clearly for the next steps! This retreat could be exactly what I need to refresh, refocus, recharge and to begin walking out the dreams that He has placed on my heart. If you would pick me, I promise to use this time to listen to His still small voice, to reflect and recharge. It could be just the catalyst that this God girl needs. :)

  • Do you know the feeling you get when you need to write something very important down but your pen is nearly out of ink and the only paper you can find is so filled with old messages that there is absolutely no space to write down a new one. That is how my life has felt since October 2012 when my husband was diagnosed with a rare and aggressive salivary gland cancer. Since then he has faced months of concurrent radiation and chemotherapy (dropping to 120 pounds),a second surgery in January 2014 when the cancer metastasized and a second set of radiation treatments. Because of nerve damage, one side of his face is permanently paralyzed; so he can no longer drive; and he has difficulty eating/swallowing. If this were a men’s retreat, I would nominate him in a heartbeat because he is the real hero here.

    I am blessed , I know, that he is still fighting and beating the odds….and we have wonderful children and a warm and supportive church family….but it gets hard. It seems that all I do is drive to doctors and work and worry. I would so love to stop and breathe and look forward to something again.

    Guess that says itv all.

  • Thank you for you’re generosity in blessing someone with this opportunity. In all honesty all I can do is close my eyes take a deep breath, sigh and imagine that I’m there on this retreat with you and all of these amazing women! I recently told a friend I’ve never been on a girls trip or even know what that would be like, but if I had to imagine going on one– this is the kind I would love to be a part of. My husband works out of town so I am home with my daughter who is a senior in high school and my son who is a fifth grader- I’m blessed with amazing children and a husband who is a gift from God. I am part owner of a preschool so let’s just say between all of that and their extracurricular activities there’s not much left of me at the end of the day. In my mind I desire to pray more and truly just don’t know how to squeeze everything in each day. I think I honestly just need to learn how to put God first, family second, job third. Others need this retreat too. My need is simple, just to focus on Jesus and gain friends that I don’t have to learn from other women. All I do is work so I don’t really have many relationships, this would change that, and my life. Thank you for considering having me along with you!! In Him, Heather

  • I would love to be at this retreat. Proverbs 31 ministry pours out with such excellence. It is my passion to walk in the fullness of my God size dream as well as pour out into the next generation and to the women of my church. I am a pastors wife and this month marks our third year as a church plant. I would love a time to get away, rest in the presence of my Creator and listen with intent to move forward. I am reminded of the 23rd Psalm this week because God makes me lie in green pastures & this retreat would represent green pastures for me and I would be both honored and EXCITED to attend!

  • I would love to go because the last 2 years of my life has been full of changes. I have had the blessing of marrying an amazing but man but we also have had many trials. I was able to share them and receive prayer through the online studies. So many of our trials have been changed and God has heaped blessings on us. However, one area we are struggling is with finances bc our trials cost us quite a bit of money, custody lawyers, lawyers in general aren’t cheap. I heard about the retreat from an amazing friend of mine and online leader, Teresa. I have been praying for God to show me a way I can go and I pray this is it. My husband even has asked family members to chip in money to help me go as a bday gift but I don’t think anyone has. This retreat falls right after my birthday and it would be the best birthday gift too; to rest, to be refreshed with other women who love God as I do to just be able to drink in God after 2 years of walking in the dessert, pushing myself trusting in Him daily. . And a plus….I know I could go and I only live an hour away! :)

  • 5 years ago, I had prayed, listened and knew without a doubt that I was walking in God’s will with the launch of my business, Reveal, Unveiling the Beauty Within. Then life hit in the form of a job loss and I did what I so often do, I relied on my own accord. I threw on my superwoman cape and with my hand held firmly up in the air, I declared, “Move over God, I got this.” Cue the superwoman music.

    Before long anger and resentment set in and I found myself wondering lost in the desert. During that 5 year desert time my mom passed, our church home was no longer focused on God’s definition of church but was caught up in politics and arguments and we left. My husband was unemployed for a year, our marriage was on the brink, and there were surgeries and medical bills. Basically the life I was trying to uphold on my own was crumbling all around me. Where was this God of mine? O. Yeah. I said, “I got this.”

    Then about a year ago, that nudging whispered to me again. I found myself back in that bible study group from years ago. The first night I sat in that room, tears filled my eyes and I was overwhelmed with a sense of belonging. I was home. Ready to rekindle my relationship and He was there welcoming me back with open arms. I was reminded to repent, forgive, and receive grace. The prodigal daughter with her worn and tattered cape was back to try yet again.

    They say hind sight is always 20/20. The feelings of anger and resentment have been replaced with happiness and a grateful heart. I am slowly trying to open up to the idea of getting connected again with a church home. That wound still hurts when it is touched. 5 years in the desert provided some good wake-up calls and I came out stronger, nicer, and more loving than when I entered. My relationships have improved. I am now at a place where I am open to receiving and once again listening and waiting for those nudges.

    The superwoman cape still hangs in the closet as a reminder of where I have been and where I have yet to go. It is a part of my story. I have worn it a lot in my life and probably some days when I am vacillating, I will try to patch it together to see if it still fits.

    And that Reveal idea, still there, always nudging, but perhaps may be a different path than originally planned, may be now a ministry. The desert time, despite its at times overwhelming difficulty, it made me the person I am today, everything does. Every trial. Every relationship. Every experience. Every good and bad choice, weaves together our faith story to reveal the true beauty that lies within.

    Thanks for the consideration.

    Jill

  • I am so crushed that I can’t afford to attend this retreat, all of my online group sisters who I’ve gotten so close with are going to be there. I lost my job weeks after starting p31 and these women have prayed me through some dark times since then. I would love nothing more v than to thank them and fellowship in person as I form a deeper connection with the Lord. I think there are so many of us who ache to be able to attend, I only wish we could all afford to attend!

  • Karen, first of all, I want to thank you for not only being generous with this scholarship, but also being an example for all of us to live out our priorities. I would love to win this retreat. I have been a part of Proverbs 31 OBS since Melissa first started it on her blog. This ministry has helped me through some very difficult times in my life, including my cancer diagnosis. These sisters in Christ are there to not only pray for and with me, but also challenge me to grow closer to God. Being a part of the OBS team for some time, it would be incredible to finally meet some of these sweet sisters and dear friends across the miles. I am certain that whoever is selected will be blessed beyond measure.

  • I would love to go an experience this retreat I will love to learn how to dream with God how to walk with him I will love to go to with my daughters Valerie and Vanessa they’re twins they go to a boarding school actually in Asheville this weekend they’re home from school and I will love to bring them with me they’re 15 yrs old and I know they can learn so much from this weekend enjoy the retrieved learn about God and how to get closer to God I truly truly appreciate the opportunity you’re thank you so much God bless you.

  • I would love to attend. But, I do not think I deserve this anymore than any of the lovely ladies who participate with the OBS. I’m already blessed by being part of this ongoing study! That is so kind of you to offer this!!!! Thanks OBS and Karen!

    • Please exclude me! I just was told, I will not be available to attend that weekend. (Sorry, I didn’t know until now.)

  • This is wonderful you are giving away a scholarship to the retreat.. I know that whoever is meant to have it and be blessed will be. I would like to be one of those in consideration for this. I need this as since my life threatening illness 5 years ago I have been on a journey of recovery and finding out what I can and can’t do… what I should and shouldn’t do…and most importantly what God has planned is the most important, and what I focus on everyday. I just recently had a few things that have been not the answers I wanted or expected. One is having to cut back at a job I love very very much because of my illness that has caused limitations… I am seeking God in showing me the peace and strength I need to adjust to my life changes and believe getting away with others seeking God and having time to concentrate on me and my time with him would be such a blessing. I hope I am considered to receive this scholarship.. but if I don’t … God Bless all who are going and whoever wins this.. it will be a beautiful blessing and gift.

  • What an amazing gift that you are giving Karen, truly a blessing!! I have read so many stories from above that are so worthy of winning your gift. Our God is an Awesome God!!! :) Here is my reason that I would love to attend; I have grown so much more since I have started getting involved with OBS Proverbs31 Online Bible Studies. The “Made to Crave” and Made to Crave Action Plan” brought me not only closer to God but out of my comfort zone. I love to be around people, to encourage, motivate, and help them reach their potential. When I was in an auto accident in 2011, my injuries caused me not to be able to work ( I was not able to lift) . But the point I’m making is I had not realized how withdrawn and how shut in I had allowed myself to become until God led me to OBS Proverbs31 Online Bible Study. God helped me to see through the studies how shut in I had become and I began to bloom and become the active, inspirational person that I knew I was. All of the wonderful Ladies at OBS Proverbs 31 have been an inspiration to me and God has opened doors within OBS Proverbs 31 for me to Volunteer through “Made to Crave Action Plan”, “Limitless Life”, and now “The Best Yes” and I’m continuing to grow and loving it!!! Thanks to All OBS Proverbs 31 for continually shining God’s light unto others. You/We do change peoples lives!!! I would love to meet as many of you as I could that have touched so many lives!!

  • I feel like I have already been given way more than I deserve from Christ and his amazing grace! However, attending this conference would be such a breath of fresh air in my life (biblically and physically speaking)! There are so many reasons I would love to attend! First is because Proverbs 31 Ministries is my favorite go-to ministry when down, in need or just feel like praising God! The women who write and speak for you always have something I can use in my life to pull me closer to Christ. Second, I have MS, which is finally for the most part stable after being diagnosed 10 years ago and losing the job of my dreams 4 years ago as a result. It has been very hard on my family and myself, but we have only made it this far with the help from family, friends and of course our faith. In the recent months I have had a desire to attempt to re-enter the workforce as a nurse, which was the job I worked so hard to acquire and ultimately lost. I really feel as I am being called to return to the field and use my story of joy, love, loss, depression, faith, recovery and the realization that God has a reason for everything, as a tool to reach others. It would be awesome to be able to get away from the “norm” in my life and completely focus on the gift of study and sharing to aid my call. I am completely available that weekend. If I do not get to attend, I covet your prayers in my journey!

  • I recently submitted an application to be a Proverbs 31 OBS Volunteer….what better way to begin my journey with Proverbs 31 than to be fully immersed at a Retreat?! With all the changes happening in my life recently, it would be such a nice time of refreshing – spiritually, emotionally, and physically! I would be very grateful to be considered!

  • This would be a great opportunity to refresh myself spiritually. A couple of years ago my husband and I were let go from a full-time ministry we loved, rather abruptly. We were traumatized that people we thought were “good” Christians would treat us so terribly. Ever since then we have been stuck in a rut concerning our service to the Lord. We have been living with my mother-in-law ever since. Looking for employment is hard these days. Between that and taking care of our daughter and other responsibilities it has been really hard for me to reconnect with my heavenly Father. If I won I would count it a blessing and give God the glory.

  • I have never been to a retreat like this and it would be absolutely amazing and such a beautiful experience to go to an event like this! I think an even like this would be absolutely life changing and I would be so honored if you picked me.
    Thank you for giving this gift away for someone else to enjoy it!

    Michelle

  • After reading all the above comments I wasn’t going to put my name in, but then the urging said to do so. I have had emotional changes the last couple of months and more coming.

    I don’t have small children at home my children are married with children of their own. But the chance to spend time with my OBS sisters is just what I need to be refreshed to face all that is ahead of me. Praying The Lord will lead you to that perfect decision.

  • I am a wife,and mom of a special needs child (paraplegic and autistic),and have never been to a retreat. I would LOVE to be! PLEASE pick me. I will never be able to afford to,as I am a student and hubby is disabled. Thanks ever so much!
    Lisa

  • I’d like to enter my friend Ally Felo. She would never ask for herself. She is a stay-at-home mom of three children, two with severe allergy needs. Her husband travels for work, and is often gone – leaving Ally to shuttle 3 kiddos, ages 6, 11, and 12 to and from three different schools and to many different activities. She and her husband give much of their free time serving the 4th and 5th graders at their church. This woman is who I want to be when I grow up and I know that she not only deserves a “retreat”, but that she would so enjoy the opportunity to connect with other Christian Women longing for some reflection time.

    I love that you are providing this opportunity Karen! Thank you!

  • I would love to win this retreat giveaway for my sister Kim who lives near Charlotte. She has been battling cancer and just recently completed her radiation treatments ahead of schedule and will be available for this weekend getaway. There is no way she could afford to go as she has many bills due to her treatments. She knows God has been preparing her for a special purpose as she has endured many trials the last many years. She could really use the encouragement and the opportunity to ignite her dreams with God.

  • Hi Karen…..what an awesome experience it would be to be part of a gathering of God loving, confident ‘Yes women’ for God! Even though I’m older…. I believe I could add a little Aussie/African flavor to your conference. My husband & I have been missionaries to orphaned & abandoned children & babies in Zimbabwe for the past 3 1/2 years….but a couple of months ago we were made to leave…so since then we have been waiting on God for direction in South Africa…… God will make a way where there seems to be no way. I belong to Group 70 small group & have loved the fellowship of my mostly American girlfriends whilst doing Prov 31 OBS……to meet some of them face to face would be awesome. Bless you. Jen