The Journey October 2014

Last week we gathered at Maranatha Bible Conference in Muskegon, Michigan for The Journey.  We have returned to these grounds on the beautiful shores of Lake Michigan for over two decades.  It is a place of healing, freedom, peace, rest and redemption for those who attend.

The week was uncharacteristically quiet, the participants making their way to and from the sessions in hushed tones, even the dining hall felt like a space of unusual quiet.  Those of us who have been leading these weeks for years all noticed the change from what has been so familiar.  We watched and listened closely for what God was doing, wondering what this quietness was nurturing in the hearts of those who had come to explore their stories more deeply.

Friday brought a bright blue fall sky and the warmth of the sunshine, which had been scarce throughout the week.  There were a dozen people desiring baptism in the cold waters of the lake, and many others who joined on the shore to share in the goodness of new life rising as old messages and lies were laid to rest in the frigid waters.

The theme that emerged as the week unfolded was that of God’s creative care and faithfulness to the work of Open Hearts Ministry.  We enjoyed a week of quietness, that left us all aware of God’s presence and His kind hand guiding the work of this ministry as it seeks to cultivate communities of care where stories of pain can be spoken, heard and redeemed.

Tracy Johnson

  • Valerie Avery
    October 15, 2014 (6:13 pm)

    Love these words Tracy that sum up the experience for me. I felt that quiet, that space to listen, to rest where I was, to wait for God to appear and surprise me. He did through little quiet things….a shadow behind me as I walked in the darkness early one morning, a white feather that stood upright when I tossed it back to the sand, as if to say, “don’t leave me here, I am an Ebenezer for you, for this place, for this time. A heart shaped rock that now sits among other rocks I’ve gathered on the Maranatha campus. Quiet with Him ever present.

    • Barb Harder
      October 16, 2014 (8:43 pm)

      I prayed faithfully in the days leading up to the Journey and while the Journey was taking place. I have also been praying now that it is over that the Administrative team, presenters, leaders, office staff, support staff as well as all of the participants (in particular my friend Jean) would be able to take some time for rest and renewal as they re-enter their lives at home. May God bless each and every one richly. My life would be so different if I had not been able to attend the Journey (SALTS in 1987!) This ministry and the people who shepherd it will always have a very special place in my heart.

  • Erin
    October 16, 2014 (12:29 am)

    Miss my Journey family already!

  • Kristy McLaughlin
    October 17, 2014 (12:02 am)

    Beautifully said, Tracy. Last week was so beautiful and healing for me. God placed me in group with the perfect people to assist with my healing. When I visited the beach one last time Saturday morning, it was almost silent. There was very little wind, and the water was so smooth, with only small ripples gently caressing the shore. I sat down there alone (with Jesus) and had an amazing supernatural experience. Thank you to everyone who made last week possible.

  • Gertrude Zellmer
    June 23, 2018 (7:43 pm)

    I attended several sessions in Ketchikan Alaska. I am in New Jersey with my daughter. We both need this teaching and experience. Are there any training near us or groups: Sicklerville, New Jersey

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