By Jake Hall

published in Family Matters eNewsletter, January 14, 2016

There is a heart on my hand. Maybe you have seen a number of people walking around Highland Hills with hearts on their hands. Last night a few of our members were registering folks for our upcoming retreat, A Call to Love. As people received information about the retreat, they also received a red heart drawn on their hand in bright red sharpie ink.

Erin, my wife was one of those registrars, so she grabbed my hand and drew a heart. In the moment, I thought it funny, that she drew a heart on my hand, since my heart has been hers for many years now. Our love has grown into a life of love and family and ministry. I walked away smiling, as the ink dried on my hand.

That heart stayed on my hand the rest of the evening as I greeted the Wednesday night regulars and a few new faces. When I shook hands with people, I began to think about the community we create together. Highland Hills is a place where we share our hearts and hands and do God’s good work together. That, too, made me smile.

On the way home we stopped at the scene of an accident on Briarcliff. There were no injuries and all was well, thanks be to God.

As I got back into my van, I shook the hand of the driver, and I caught a glimpse of the heart on my hand.

As I type this article, I realize my bright red heart is fading now. It seems that a sharpie can only last so long. We need to be reminded of what it means to love God and love ourselves and to love our neighbors. Love is the reason that we have gathered together as a community of faith at Highland Hills. Love is everything. That is one of the reasons I am so excited about our Spiritual Renewal Retreat. Right on the cusp of Valentine’s Day and at the edge of the Lenten season, this retreat gives us the opportunity for more than a reminder. This retreat give us the opportunity for revival, to remember our first love.

I hope that you will register for our retreat and to allow this time to revive your spirit and the spiritual lives of your families. There is a place for you, your children, and our youth in the retreat. Here are a few reasons to register:

1) Jeanie Miley is a gifted speaker and author, and you will be blessed by her ministry. Don’t miss it.
2) Bring your whole family! Youth will be led by a special guest. Bring them. Children and Preschoolers will have exciting and thoughtful activities that follow our theme.
3) God can do amazing things when churches focus on love and what love moves us to accomplish.

Click here to register.