Saturday Snapshot

There are around 130 groups that hold their own events, meetings and retreats at The Cove each year.  Of these groups is a regionally located church that holds their annual women’s retreat here.  This past weekend, 250 women came for a time of rest, renewal, relaxation, and inspiration.  How we loved having them here!

Today, we’re sharing photos that one of the women from this group shared with us.  Enjoy!

Oh, the beauty of God’s creation!  Just look at the view from the overlook.  Many from this group ventured out and hiked to the overlook, a 6-mile round-trip hike from the Training Center.

Training Center View sm

Overlook View - 2 sm

Overlook View - 1 sm

The Chatlos Memorial Chapel and Visitors Center, open to the public for tours, but also a popular spot to visit for our groups staying on property is featured in the next few photos.  The structure, history, and beauty of this place are something to behold.  Billy Graham said,  “There are two gorgeous chapels in eastern America. One is at Duke University and the other is here at The Cove.”

Click here to plan your next visit to our chapel and visitor’s center.

Chapel - 6 sm

Chapel - 3 sm
You’ll find intricate detail throughout the chapel.
Chapel - 4 (1)sm
Calligraphy in the chapel prayer room. One of Mrs. Graham’s favorite verses.
Bear - 5 sm
One of God’s beautiful creatures popped by for a visit.

Bear - 3 sm

We hope you’ve enjoyed the photos!  Thanks to Ashley for sharing them with us.

Click here to see a full list of upcoming events at The Cove or contact our Guest Group department to hold your group retreat at The Cove.

Recipe from The Cove Kitchen: Dark Chocolate Truffle Cake

Recipes from The Cove kitchen logo


Today, our pastry chef, Natalie, shares another delicious recipe that has become a guest favorite here at The Cove.  Enjoy this delectable Dark Chocolate Truffle Cake and come back and let us know how it turns out in the comment section below!

Dark Chocolate Truffle Cake
Makes one 8-inch cake

Dark Chocolate Cake Recipe
1 ½ cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
¾ cup unsalted butter
1 cup + 2 Tbsp granulated sugar
¼ + ⅛ tsp salt
1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbsp coffee extract
5 eggs
¾ cup cocoa powder

Chocolate Glaze Recipe
1 ½ cup dark or semi-sweet chocolate chips
¾ cup heavy cream

Preparing cake:
Preheat oven to 350°. Melt semi-sweet chocolate chips and butter in pan over medium heat. Remove from heat. Stir in sugar, salt, and both vanilla and coffee extracts to melted chocolate and butter. Once mixed, add the eggs, beating briefly until smooth. Add cocoa powder and mix until just combined. Bake in greased 8” cake pan for 25 minutes. Remove from oven and cool completely.

Preparing glaze:
Heat cream to a boil in sauce pan over medium heat. Remove from heat and pour heated cream over chocolate chips in a glass bowl. Let stand for 1-2 minutes, then whisk together until chocolate chips are melted and mixture is smooth. Spread Glaze over cooled cake. Tap cake pan a couple of times on counter to spread evenly over cake. Freeze cake overnight. Remove from freezer and from cake pan and thaw just until no longer frozen and serve.


Enjoy other recipes from The Cove kitchen here.

Enjoy delicious recipes like this on your next stay at The Cove. Click here to see a full list of upcoming events at The Cove or contact our Guest Group department to hold your group retreat at The Cove.


Prayer Note: May

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

Have you opened your windows yet? The warm spring days we’ve been enjoying here in Western North Carolina call for open windows and long walks in the fresh air. For many of us, the dark, closed-in feeling that brought on cabin fever in February is eclipsed in April by the hopeful signs of spring, bringing renewed energy and a desire to start fresh on the inside and out.

Thus signals the annual return of a longstanding tradition: Spring Cleaning. We scrub and polish and dust and shine until every surface sparkles. By the time the overhaul is complete, only a few errant dust particles remain suspended in the bright beams of sunlight streaming through freshly cleaned windows.

Some years are different, though. However noble our housecleaning goals may be, sometimes a busy schedule overrides Spring Cleaning. That’s where practical shortcuts can come in handy.

Since I’m pressed for time this year, scented candles and plug-in air fresheners will have to do the trick. With such enticing names as “Gorgeous Day,” “Lilac Loveliness,” “Ocean Breeze” and “Sundrenched Linen,” I’m having a difficult time choosing; however, anything’s better than what I have at home: “Midwinter Dust.”

When necessary, this shortcut approach can come in handy. After all, we all enjoy taking a whiff of a pleasant aroma.

Did you know that our prayers are a pleasant aroma to God?

“Let my prayer be counted as incense before You, and the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice (Psalm 141:2, ESV).”

“And when he had taken it, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each one had a harp and they were holding golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of God’s people (Revelation 4:8, NIV).

Author Elisabeth Elliot explains, “In these verses, our prayers are described as being “like incense” to God. All of our prayers are included, from the most eloquent ones to the most inarticulate groanings. What is incense good for? It appears to serve no practical purpose at all, and its smoke and fragrance soon dissipate. Our prayers are like that, because they seem to accomplish little and they soon vanish, but God likes the smell of them.” (Elliot, Elisabeth. Be Still My Soul. Grand Rapids, MI.: Revell, 2003.)

What makes our prayers smell sweet to God?

  • Prayer Offered in the Name of Jesus — “Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise—the fruit of lips that confess his name (Hebrews 13:15).” The book of Hebrews describes how Christ came as the fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecies of a coming Messiah. His perfect atoning sacrifice on the cross put an end to the need for the Old Testament system of sacrifices, as His death and resurrection opened the way into the very presence of God (see Hebrews 9:13-10:23). The book of Ephesians calls this amazing act of love “a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God” (Ephesians 5:2, ESV). We can pray because Jesus opened the way!
  • Prayer of Repentance — After the prophet Nathan confronted King David with his sins of adultery with Bathsheba and themurder of her husband, Uriah, David acknowledged his sin and repented with deep humility. Psalm 51 records his prayer for God’s mercy, forgiveness and cleansing. “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise (Psalm 51:17, NIV).”
  • Prayer of Faith—“And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him (Hebrews 11:6, ESV).” Our Father is pleased when His children trust Him. “And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him (1 John 5:14-15, ESV).”
  • Prayer of Humility/SurrenderJesus offers the supreme example of this type of prayer, as we hear Him pray the ultimateprayer of surrender in the Garden of Golgotha the night before His crucifixion. “And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, saying ‘My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.’” (Matthew 26:39, ESV).
  • Prayer for God’s Glory to be Displayed —Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving, and perform your vows to the Most High, and call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify me (Psalm 50:14-15, NIV).” Elijah prayed thistype of prayer as he stood on Mount Carmel and faced the prophets of Baal. “And it came to pass, at the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that Elijah the prophet came near and said, ‘Lord God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, let it be known this day that You are God in Israel and I am Your servant, and that I have done all these things at Your word. Hear me, O Lord, hear me, that this people may know that You are the Lord God, and that You have turned their hearts back to You again’ (1 Kings 18:36, NKJV).”
  • Prayer of Thanksgiving and Praise — God loves to hear us praise Him! “The one who offers thanksgiving as his sacrifice glorifies me; to one who orders his way rightly I will show the salvation of God!” (Psalm 50:23, ESV).

Need a break from Spring Cleaning? Take a deep breath and breathe out a prayer!


Join us in praying for the following events in May:

All seminars in 2016 are free (lodging and meal fees apply.)
(For more information or to register, click on the links below.)

Senior Celebration :The Church in the Last Days
with Don Wilton — May 16-18

An Evening at The Cove : Dinner, Concert & Meet and Greet
with Mark Schultz —May 22

Intensive Bible Training: Acts of the Apostles, Acts for You
with Mark Yarbrough — May 23-27

Military Marriage Retreat: Back to the Basics
with Michael Easley — May 27-29
Note: Entire package (program, meals, and lodging) is free to active-duty military.  Click on link to complete application.

Thank you for praying!

Saturday Snapshot – Tweet Tweet

Yes, we have plenty of beautiful birds on The Cove property, but today the tweeting we’re sharing is of a different sort.

Earlier this week, we had a two hundred people attending a special leadership renewal retreat for youth leaders and their spouses.  Some in this group, probably because they need to keep up with the youth, were utilizing social media – Twitter in particular – to share their experience.

Today we’re sharing some of their “tweets”.

Don’t worry, if you never plan on using Twitter, this is an opportunity for you to take a glimpse into what happens in the Twittersphere!

A quick lesson on Twitter for non-Twitter-users:  Twitter is a real-time social media sharing site in which you are only allowed 140 characters or less to communicate your message.  Other people on Twitter can reply to, like, or re-tweet (share) your message.

These first two “tweets” capture our guests’ anticipation of rest, renewal, and learning of Biblical principles.  This is exactly what Billy and Ruth Graham envisioned this place to be….a place of rest, renewal, and instruction.

Tweet from LRR May 2016 6


Tweet from LRR May 2016 5

You can’t beat the food at The Cove.  Here, one of our guests shares his delicious experience.

Tweet from LRR May 2016 4

Our chef has shared several of his recipes from The Cove kitchen.  Click here to see if one of those recipes strikes your fancy and for printable recipes.

If you’ve tasted the bread pudding you’re probably salivating right now.  We are too!

Tweet from LRR May 2016 3

Here a guest shares a couple quotes that resonated with him from one of our seminar speakers, Alex McFarland.

Tweet from LRR May 2016 8

As our guests and speakers depart three days after their arrival, they share thoughts of their Cove experience:

Tweet from LRR May 2016 2  Tweet from LRR May 2016 9

Tweet from LRR May 2016 10


Tweet from LRR May 2016 11

Tweet from Sean McDowell from LRR May 2016

Besides Twitter, you can also find us on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Periscope.

We’d love to see you in person at The Cove!

Click here for a schedule of upcoming seminars, retreats, and concerts at The Cove.

Would you like to hold your group event at The Cove?  Click here for information.

God bless you!

Make Plans Now to Spend a Week at The Cove


This summer, The Cove is offering five Intensive Bible Training Seminars, designed to take an in-depth and comprehensive approach to understanding a specific topic or section of the Bible. 

Instead of the typical 3-day seminar, these seminars offer a 5-day format.  Allowing you time to really dig into God’s Word.

As an added bonus, all seminars in 2016 are free!  (Meal and lodging package fees apply.)

As you’re making  summertime plans, we hope you’ll consider setting aside time to grow in your relationship with God right here at The Cove, nestled in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains.  

2016 Intensive Bible Training Seminars
(For more information and to register, click on one of the titles below or call 1-800-950-2092.)

Acts for the Apostles, Acts for You (Acts
with Mark Yarbrough, May 23-27, 2016

The Bible’s Roadmap: Living Confidently in Christ (Romans)
with Woodrow Kroll, June 20-24, 2016

The Arrival of the Day of the Lord
Joel 2:18-3:21; Ezekiel 33-47; Isaiah 19:1-25

with Walter C. Kaiser, Jr., June 27- July 1, 2016

The Midnight Cry (Matthew 25:1-13)
with R.T. Kendall, July 18-22, 2016

Recovering the Lost Language of Lament (Selected Scripture)
with Michael Card, July 25-29, 2016
NOTE:  Join Michael for An Evening at The Cove (dinner & concert)on Sunday, July 24th .  Click here for details.

We hope to see you soon!


Kendra Graham’s Online Bible Study – Psalm 62:3-5a

Kendra Blog Title

Welcome to Kendra Graham’s Online Bible Study! This is a place where we can come together and share in our journey towards Scriptural truths and spiritual maturity. We pray this will be a safe, respectful, resourceful place to come and discuss God’s Word…to discover What it says…What it means…and What it means to you!

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Kendra Graham notes from Psalm 62:3-5a

“They have counseled only to thrust him down from his high position; how long will you assail a man, that you may murder him, all of you, like a leaning wall, like a tottering fence?  They delight in falsehood; they bless with their mouth, but inwardly, they curse.  Selah.  My Soul waits in silence for God only.”

Step 1

How long will you assail a man, murder him, like a leaning wall, tottering fence?  They counsel: thrust him down, they delight in falsehood, they bless with their mouth, inwardly curse.  Selah.  Wait in silence for God only.

Step 2


There is the saying, “Good guys finish last”.  That is the saying that brushed through my mind when I first read these verses.  It’s the crooked business men/women that seem to get ahead.  It’s the people who have no boundaries and no conscience that get whatever they want.  Just turn on cable news for a solid 60 seconds and you can hear multiple political smears between candidates calling each other liars and thieves.  It’s hard to make it nowadays if you are determined to live a life with integrity.  It’s impossible to make it in politics.

David is asking these men, “How much longer will you try to press me down? How much longer will you try and try and try again to destroy me?”  Lies are being said about David in public.  Flattery is being given liberally in the presence of David.  Envy, jealousy, and hatred is the root cause of why these men are trying to bring him down.  David sees through it all with discernment.   What does he do to deal with these people?  Does David take it to the papers in an op-ed?  Does David do a sit down personal interview on Fox News Sunday to set the record straight?  No.  David pauses.  David pauses? Who has time for a pause at a time like this?!

SELAH, is a musical term for pause.  Our immediate reaction is to try to set the record straight.  David’s first reaction is to pause.  Pausing is so important.  It’s the hardest thing to do in the world.  Pausing makes us look guilty, right?  Pausing will make people think we are involved in all those things we are being accused of.

Pausing helps us gain focus back on where we need it to be.  Pausing gives us a moment to reflect.  Pausing will enable us to make clear decisions.  Pausing, most importantly, gives us that crucial moment to recalibrate our heart and soul back to God, His Word and His promises.  This is not easy peasy for David either.  You hear his complaints, you hear what is against him, and David is not just ignoring it, and saying it doesn’t matter, he’s not saying “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me”.   It matters to him what is being said and done against him.  It truly matters, and it hurts, deeply.

Can you relate?  I can.  I want to fight, and scream and yell on David’s behalf (and my own) and make it right, and make those people see their error, so that they will be silenced.  David’s reaction is not to silence all the rumors, not to silence all the lies, not to silence the rotten flattery in his face, but David’s response is to be silent himself, determined to wait for God to move and to do.

David makes the physical decision here… his heart, telling his brain to tell his mouth and body to be silent. ugh.  Sorry… that is hard stuff.  I’m thankful we get to read and see here, that even David struggled with this.   There is no way to actually do this without the power of God.  We have to get in His Word, know His promises, and then believe them.

God never seems to work in the time frame or in the way we would like or demand.  His ways are higher than our ways, and His thoughts higher than ours (Isaiah 55:9).

Step 3


Will we put our trust in the fact that God has got a firm grip on our circumstances, and the beat on the street?  Will we set our heart to tell our brain to tell our body to *pause* and mouth to be silent and wait for God?  ugh.  *sigh*  Sorry… that is just my natural reaction.  This is hard stuff.



LORD, help me to pause today, and trust that You understand and know, and as things according to me are falling apart… perhaps truly they are just falling into place. Give me the strength to pause and believe You over everything else.


What Scripture are you studying now? What have you learned? How has the Lord spoke to you? Share with us in the comments section.

To see more of Kendra’s Bible Studies, click here.

The blog of the Billy Graham Training Center at the Cove