Category Archives: Military

Saturday Snapshot – Military Marriage Retreat Race to the Top September 2017

There’s nothing like a good challenge, and many of the men and women attending last weekend’s Military Marriage Retreat were able to accomplish a difficult feat.

Earlier this year, we started our Race to the Top challenge because we knew many of our active-duty military men and women enjoy hiking or running  on the trails throughout The Cove property.  So we thought, why not have a little healthy competition?!

This last weekend marked our 2nd Race to the Top challenge.  The weather was perfect and 22, in all, finished the race.

The race began at the trail entrance near Chatlos Memorial Chapel and ended at The Cove overlook.  The course is a steep, winding, four-mile uphill journey!

sm blog Start Here Sign at Start of Race

Following the honor system, each participant timed themselves and completed the challenge during their free time on Saturday.

Some of our racers woke up early and headed up at sunrise, while others ventured up in the afternoon.  Finish times ranged from 42 minutes and 28 seconds to just over an hour.

Enjoy the pictures…

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This is a very welcoming sign to our racers…only 150 yards to go!

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The mens’ winner rounding the bend to the overlook…

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Behold the view from the overlook…
Not a bad reward for finishing the race!

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Many of the race participants took pictures at the top.  Here they are…

sm blog selfie cutout couple DSC_0001 from LP (28) sm blog selfie cutout couple DSC_0001 from LP (19) sm blog Mark Oldroyd and wife Mark time was 50_58 sm blog male and female winner DSC_0001 from LP (26) sm blog couple with selfie cutout DSC_0001 from LP (31) sm blog couple DSC_0001 from LP (17) sm blog Anita Flowers and hubs 1 hour 15 min

Taking time for a little fellowship and more pictures on the mountain…

sm blog fellowship at the overlook DSC_0001 from LP (23) sm blog another couple looking at view DSC_0001 from LP (24) sm blog 3 couples DSC_0001 from LP (29) sm blog big view with couple looking out DSC_0001 from LP (32) sm blog couple looking out at view DSC_0001 from LP (20)

And the winners are…
Married!

sm blog male and female winner DSC_0001 from LP (26)

That’s right, the men’s and women’s division winners are a couple!! That’s one fast couple.

The view from the top and the journey along the way was a memorable experience for all.

Look who one of our couples spotted as they were coming off the trail near the parking lot… an official Cove ambassador!

Bear that Cristina Moore and husband saw near trail entrance coming back to parking lot

On Sunday morning, we opened up our last session of the weekend with the winner announcement and prize award.

Bradley was our mens’ winner, and he finished the race in an impressive 42 minutes and 28 seconds.

sm blog Male Winner

And our womens’ winner, Marcelle, finished in 51 minutes and two seconds.  Well done, sister! sm blog Female Winner

Congratulations to the winners, as well as to all the participants. 

There was more than a race going on over the weekend, 70 military couples were blessed with powerful Bible teaching from Tommy Nelson, worshiping, relaxing, and enjoying each other’s company.


We expect to have three Military Marriage Retreats at The Cove in 2018.  At the time of this publication, we only have two confirmed, so check back for the third date (probably March 2018) in November.  These retreats for our military are free to active-duty, Guard, and Reserve service-members and their spouses.  (Includes program, meals and lodging).  Please help spread the word to your military friends and loved ones.

Active-duty, Guard and Reserve service-members are also welcome to attend any of our regular seminars, Personal Spiritual Retreats and concerts.  Click here for more information and to download the resource form.


Saturday Snapshot – Race to the Top

Who doesn’t love a good challenge?

Many of the participants for last weekend’s Military Marriage Retreat sure did!  Anytime we have active-duty military men and women on property, hiking or running to the overlook is a popular option during free time, so this year we thought we’d make an official race of it–complete with prize packs for the winners!

Our Race to the Top challenge started from the trail entrance near Chatlos Memorial Chapel and ended at the top of The Cove overlook–a nearly 4-mile uphill trek!

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Each participant  timed themselves (the honor system seemed appropriate with our honorable military participants) and completed the challenge during their free time.  Some woke up early and headed up at sunrise, while others ventured up in the afternoon.

Finish times ranged from 41 minutes and 12 seconds to over 2 hours.  As you can imagine, it wasn’t a feat for the faint of heart, but 39 people finished the race.

Here are some of the racers:

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RTTT_02 RTTT_03 RTTT_04 RTTT_06 RTTT_08 RTTT_09 RTTT_10 RTTT_11 RTTT_01

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We think the view from the top, as well as the journey along the way, was a fun experience for all.

And the winners were…

Winner 2
Women’s Division Winner – Kati. She completed the race with a time of 46:03.
Winner 1
Men’s Division Winner – Christopher. He completed the race with a time of 41:12.

Congratulations to the winners, as well as to all the participants. Racing to the overlook here at The Cove is certainly no easy feat!

There was more than a race going on over the weekend…118 military couples were enlightened by powerful Bible teaching from Chip Ingram, and led in worship by Marty Goetz.

Audience

Chip Ingram

Marty Goetz


The next Military Marriage Retreat at The Cove will be held September 8-10, 2017.  Tommy Nelson will be speaking on the topic of Living Well in Your Marriage.  The retreat is free (includes program, meals and lodging) to active-duty, Guard, and Reserve service-members, so please help spread the word.


2016 Military Marriage Retreats

military marriage hand holding Sept 2015 2 small

We have been blessed to host military marriage retreats at The Cove for the past several years, and one of the best parts is that the retreats are free to these wonderful couples serving our country!

Donors have generously given so that the program, meals, and lodging  for any active-duty service-member (Guard & Reserve too) and their spouse are free.

Couples will enjoy the quiet seclusion of our mountain retreat, complete with winding trails, comfortable rooms, and delicious meals prepared by our chef and his talented team.

Most importantly, they will have plenty of time and space to be alone together with God.

military couple holding hands

See what some of our precious military couples have to say about their time spent here at The Cove:

“Thank you so much for the amazing gift of this military marriage weekend. The military lifestyle is so demanding and often puts a huge stress on many marriages.  This program with this military scholarship is such a huge blessing and it makes us all feel loved and appreciated for the sacrifices we make for this great country.”


“We extend our deepest gratitude, and thank you so very much for your kind heart.  I returned from deployment to Afghanistan in and am so grateful to have had the chance to renew my relationship with the Lord.  We have to tell you this is a great place to come to for serenity and peace in the United States.  Billy Graham’s life, story and relationship with Jesus has truly inspired me and my wife over the weekend.”


“Words cannot express the thankful hearts that my husband David and I have for your generosity! David has recently returned from a 13 month deployment in Afghanistan which was particularly difficult on our family. It was his second deployment in the past four years. The weekend away in the quiet peacefulness of The Cove was exactly what our bruised spirits needed!”

Following are the remaining 2016 Military Marriage Retreats:

Military and Marriage: Back to the Basics
with Michael Easley, May 27-29, 2016
The Book of Romance
with Tommy Nelson, October 28-30, 2016

The Cove also offers financial resources (program, meals and lodging are covered…travel is your responsibility) for couples or individuals to come to anyCove seminar or Personal Spiritual Retreat throughout the year.

Click here to download the military resource form.

Please help us spread the word and share this information with friends, family, and co-workers who could be blessed by this opportunity.

PRAYER NOTE: FEBRUARY

We hope that you will enjoy our “prayer note” — an internal communication, here at The Cove, created each month to remind and encourage our staff to pray.  We will share these with you at the beginning of each month in hopes that, you too, will be encouraged.

Prayer Note(3)

By Donna Riesen

Pray without ceasing. (1 Thessalonians 5:17, NKJV)

We made it through! Although much of the snow has melted, images remain frozen in our memories…we, the survivors of “The Blizzard of 2016.”

The huge winter storm affected the entire eastern third of our nation and disrupted the lives of more than 100 million people. Aside from the usual snow-day inconveniences of school closings and grocery stores emptied of milk and bread, there were serious and deadly consequences resulting from this massive weather system. At present, the total number of deaths attributed to the storm stands at 55. At any given moment during the storm or in its immediate aftermath, a look at online news feeds and TV newscasts revealed a study in contrasts.

One minute we viewed pics of adorable snow-suit clad children sledding with dad; next, we heard accounts of horrific traffic fatalities as semi-trucks lost control on icy highways. We grinned as we watched a Giant Panda delightedly frolicking in the powdery snow…but grins faded as we heard the tragic report of a mother and toddler who perished in their idling car—deaths blamed on carbon monoxide poisoning as a result of the vehicle’s clogged tailpipe. Our hearts broke as we learned the child’s father had been just outside, shoveling to free the car of snow.

In an odd confluence of events, we saw simultaneously the breathtaking beauty of a world covered in glistening white…”Yaaay, God!”…and the heartrending tragedy of death and destruction…”Why, God?” The varied images of the blizzard brought it into focus again: The human condition exists in a kaleidoscopic jumble of joy and pain, laughter and tears, hope and despair. At any moment, you may have a relative suffering from cancer and another celebrating the birth of their first child. On any given Sunday, your pastor may be preaching to a business professional who just received a promotion, and another who never found work after last year’s layoff.

The Old Testament records the account of Job, who after learning of the loss of his cattle, servants and even his own sons, held tight to his faith as he issued this challenge to his wife, Shall we indeed accept good from God, and shall we not accept adversity? (Job 2:10, NKJV).

As the account of this faithful man’s suffering continues, we see him begin to question God. Yet among the many lessons the book of Job teaches us, one of the most important is this: God is big enough to handle our questions. In Job chapter 38, God lays out some questions of His own, all designed to lift Job’s eyes away from his current dire situation and up to the omnipotent, sovereign God who created and sustained him. Among the many revealing questionsGod asked Job is this: “Have you entered the storehouses of the snow or seen the storehouses of the hail?” (Job 38:22, NIV).

Rather than providing a detailed meteorological map and a lesson on low pressure systems and atmospheric phenomena, God gave Job a vivid mental image of the true Source of blizzard conditions. When we’re hit with a storm of trouble and “Yaay, God!” changes to “Why, God?”, we’re tempted to ask, “Who’s minding the storehouse?” The God who’s big enough to handle our questions answers, “I AM.” There are other biblical references to God’s storehouses. The psalmist David reminds us, “He makes clouds rise from the ends of the earth; He sends lightning with the rain and bring out the wind from His storehouses.” (Psalm 135:7, NIV).

In His Sermon on the Mount, Jesus gave us this reassurance: “Consider the ravens, for they neither sow nor reap, which have neither storehouse nor barn; and God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds?” (Luke 12:24, NIV)

After confronting the Israelites with their sins of apathy, unfaithfulness and corruption, the prophet Malachi delivers God’s message of hope, promising blessing to His children if they will turn back to Him in repentance and obedience:

“’Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,’ says the Lord Almighty,’and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it.’” (Malachi 3:10).

On any given day in 2016, we will minister to a wide range of people at The Cove. When this year’s seminar season begins on February 12 with the Chip Ingram Military Marriage Retreat, some of the military personnel who attend will have just returned home from a long deployment. No doubt there will be couples whose marriage is near breaking from the strain of long periods of separation and stress. Others may be visiting The Cove simply as a relaxing getaway and a means of celebrating and strengthening an already strong marital bond. Newlyweds and seasoned marriage partners will be in attendance—each person as individual as a snowflake. How can we adequately minister to the heart of each participant? We can’t, but God can! Pray that He will throw open the windows of heaven and pour out a blessing on these men and women. Pray that God will open their hearts to each other and to Him.

The February 24-26 Leadership Renewal Retreat with Jim Henry will bring pastors from various denominations and varied situations. One pastor and spouse may arrive with joy and excitement, happy to be attending the retreat and anticipating some well-deserved downtime. Another pastoral couple may come with heavy hearts, seeking respite from a troubled ministry that is strained to the breaking point. Each retreat participant will arrive with a different set of needs and expectations, but all will be knocking at the door of the same Storehouse. Pray that the blessings of refreshment, renewal and encouragement will be poured out upon these faithful servants. Praise God, He hears our prayers, and His storehouse is never empty.

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Join us in praying for the following events in February:

FEBRUARY 2016 EVENTS
(For more information or to register, click on the links below.)

Women’s Bible Study with Jane Derrick — Morning:
January 12-February 23
Love that Makes A Difference

Women’s Bible Study with Kendra Graham — Evening:
January 12-February 23
Portrait of a Disciple

Military Marriage Retreat:
Experiencing God’s Best for Your Marriage
with Chip Ingram — February 12-14

An Evening at The Cove (dinner, concert, and meet & greet) with Brandon Heath — February 14 (lodging also available)

Leadership Renewal RetreatFree to Lead: Encouraging the Shepherd with Jim Henry — February 24-26
NOTE: This retreat is free to qualifying pastors and their spouses.

We appreciate your prayers.  God bless you!

Saturday Snapshot

Over 100 military couples are enjoying rest and renewal at The Cove this weekend for a military marriage retreat. We are blessed to serve these special people.

American Flag with NC Flag May 2015
The United States and North Carolina flags greet our guests upon their arrival.

Are you active-duty, Guard or Reserve military? We’d like you to come to The Cove and it won’t cost you a penny once you get here. Click here to learn more about our military scholarships.

Click here if you are interested in attending our military marriage retreat in September.

What’s Happening at The Cove – MAY 2015

COMING TO(1) “From the rising of the sun to its setting, the name of the Lord is to be praised!” Psalm 113:3

 Make plans to join us next month at The Cove!  We’ve got something for everyone and we would be honored to serve you on your visit!  Check out our schedule for the month of May below.

PERSONAL SPIRITUAL RETREATS(1) Click on the link below for May dates or call 1-800-950-2092.
May Personal Spiritual Retreats

SEMINARS AND EVENTS Click on the links below for more information and to register.  You may also call 1-800-950-2092.

Walk Through God’s Story 
with James Emery White, May 1-3, 2015

SeniorSalt Impact Hymn Sing
Ron Whittemore with David Gaines, May 12, 2015

Culture Shock: Whatever Happened to Right and Wrong?
with Chip Ingram, May 22-24, 2015

Growing in Love with God
with Ken Boa, May 26-28, 2015

Military Marriage Seminar: Building a Lifelong Love 
with Gary Thomas, May 29-31, 2015
Free to active duty military personnel & spouses!

Flowering Tree behind Shepherds InnFlowering tree in spring at The Cove

Want to get away with God, but can't(2) Click here for more information.

Saturday Snapshot

111 wounded veterans, some with PTSD and traumatic brain injuries, and their spouses  were encouraged and challenged while attending the Operation Heal Our Patriots reunion here at The Cove earlier this month.

Click here to watch a recap video of the weekend and to read a full story of all that took place.

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Johnny and Shannon Montoya

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Would you like to host your own event at The Cove?  Click here to visit our website or call 1-800-950-2092.

What’s Happening at The Cove – March 2015

COMING TO
One of the many hiking trails at The Cove

“For behold, the winter is past; the rain is over and gone. The flowers appear on the earth, the time of singing has come, and the voice of the turtle dove is heard in our land.” Song of Solomon 2:11-12

Come experience the Lord’s Majesty at The Cove as spring begins to make its appearance. Join us for the month of March and find rest and grow closer to our Almighty God!

Check out our schedule for March below.  Click one that interests you for more details and to register.

We look forward to serving you soon!

PERSONAL SPIRITUAL RETREATS(3)

Click on the links below for March dates or call 1-800-950-2092.

March Personal Spiritual Retreats

Guided Personal Spiritual Retreat
with John Parrish, March 27-29, 2015

PERSONAL SPIRITUAL RETREATS (2)

Click on each of the links below for more information and to register.  You may also call 1-800-950-2092.

An Evening at The Cove – Dinner, Concert & Meet and Greet
with Selah, March 12, 2015

SOLD OUT- Biblical Prophecy Seminar: Blowing the Trumpet
 with Anne Graham Lotz and Joel C Rosenberg, March 13-15, 2015

Believing Big: God’s Blueprint for Supernatural Outcomes
(*Free lodging seminar-pay program fee only- meals included!)

 with Ron Hutchcraft, March 16-18, 2015

SeniorSalt Impact Hymn Sing
with Ron Whittemore & David Gaines, March 23 2015

Pastors’ Institute- Faithful Preaching in a Post-Christian Age
 with R. Albert Mohler, Jr., March 24, 2015

Faithful Living in a Post-Christian Age
 with R. Albert Mohler, Jr., March 25-27, 2015

Women’s Spring Luncheon
 with Cissie Graham Lynch, March 29, 2015

Living the Christ Life
 with Herb Reavis, Jr., March 31-April 2, 2015

Dogwood near four-way stop_Apr_2012 Wild Dogwoods growing on Cove property.

Want to get away with God, but can't(2)
Click image for more information.

What’s Happening at The Cove – February 2015

COMING TO
View from the overlook.
Do you have big plans for this new year?  We would love to be part of that plan. 
As Jesus invited his disciples, we invite you to “Come away by yourselves to a secluded place and rest a while.”  The Cove was designed to be a place to get away from the daily demands of life and hear from God, through His word and His Spirit. 

Check out our schedule for the month of February below.  Click one that interests you for more details and to register.

We look forward to serving you soon!

PERSONAL SPIRITUAL RETREATS

Click on the links below for February dates or call 1-800-950-2092. 

February Personal Spiritual Retreats

PERSONAL SPIRITUAL RETREATS(1)

Click on each of the links below for more information and to register.  You may also call 1-800-950-2092.

An Evening at The Cove – Dinner, Concert & Meet and Greet
with Brandon Heath, February 12, 2015

Military Marriage Retreat: Building a Resilient Marriage in
Turbulent Times
(*Free to active duty military personnel and spouses)

 with John Cook, February 13-15, 2015

Church Staff Retreat- Nehemiah: Elevating Excellence in Ministry
 with Michael Catt, February 19-20, 2015

Leadership Renewal Retreat: Encouraging the Shepherd
(*Free for qualifying pastors & spouses)

 with Jim Henry, February 23-25, 2015
Please note: Limited availability. Lodging is now full.

Jonah: The Prophet Who Hated Success
(*Free lodging seminar-pay program fee only- meals included!)

 with Larry Crabb, February 27-March 1, 2015

139-3985_CRWOne of many cozy armchairs by the fireplace in the Training Center Lobby.

Want to get away with God, but can't(2)
Click image for more information.

 

2015 Military Marriage Retreats

military marriage

It’s our turn to serve you.

We want to support you and your marriage at The Cove by providing a FREE retreat for any active-duty service-member (Guard & Reserve too) and their spouse.

You will enjoy the quiet seclusion of our mountain retreat, complete with winding trails, well appointed rooms, and celebrated cuisine.

Most importantly, you will have plenty of time and space to be alone with God.  Click here to download the military resource form.

Following are the 2015 Military Marriage Retreats:

Building a Resilient Marriage in Turbulent Times
with John Cook, February 19-20, 2015

Building a Lifelong Love
with Gary Thomas, May 29-31, 2015

Military Marriage Seminar-TBD
with Gary Chapman, September 4-6, 2015

Please share this information with other individuals who would be blessed by this opportunity.

military handsThe Cove also offers financial resources (program, meals and lodging are covered…travel is your responsibility) for couples or individuals to come to any Cove seminar or Personal Spiritual Retreat throughout the year.  For more information on our financial resources, visit our website here.