All posts by mcoleman

Saturday Snapshot: Guest Groups

We have many faith-based organizations and churches that visit The Cove every year to hold their own retreats, meetings, conferences, or events. Here is a snapshot of two groups we hosted this past week:

Below is a group from East Lake Community Church in Irmo, SC. They visited The Cove for a staff retreat.

A staff member who attended the retreat shared her experience with us:  “We spent three days seeking God’s leading for our church for the upcoming ministry year. The Cove provided the perfect atmosphere for us to reflect, rest, and dream together. We are heading home encouraged and ready to engage our church with the love we have for Jesus!”

A group from the American Anglican Council was also with us. Below are some pictures of their time here.

This group was returning to The Cove for a Rector’s Summit. They were able to have breakout meetings in a few of our smaller meeting rooms as well as meet as a whole in a larger space.

In their downtime, some walked the trails throughout our  beautiful property, while others just enjoyed visiting together on the Training Center deck overlooking the Blue Ridge Mountains. 

If you or someone you know has a faith-based organization or a church, we would love for them to host their next retreat or event with us!

Have a blessed Saturday!


Click here for a schedule of seminar, concerts, and retreats at The Cove in beautiful Asheville, NC.

Are you a Christian church or non-profit ministry looking for a place to hold your conference, retreat or ministry event?  Click here for more information on holding your event at The Cove.

Visit the Chatlos Memorial Chapel, Visitors Center, and Ruth’s Prayer GardenClick here for directions and operating hours. Tours are free.

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Don’t Run Away: A Psalm by Quinn Graham

Quinn Graham, Will Graham’s son and Billy Graham’s great-grandson, has written a special  psalm to share. This one, entitled “Don’t Run Away,” was inspired by a message Quinn recently heard his dad preach.

Don’t Run Away!

I.

You may be down today

You may be angry

Angry with God because you think that He let you down

You just want to run away from God

You want to live life your own way with your own rules

Don’t run away!

If you decide to run away nothing will turn out well

Running away makes it worse

You could waste all your money on cigarettes and alcohol

II.

Soon you may get tired of living without God

You will want to come back to God, back home

God will always be on the lookout

He won’t stop looking until you come back

Once you finally come back to God, He will fix everything

When you turn your life the opposite direction

All of heaven will rejoice because you come back home

Don’t run away

By: Quinn Graham


Click here for a schedule of seminar, concerts, and retreats at The Cove in beautiful Asheville, NC.

Are you a Christian church or non-profit ministry looking for a place to hold your conference, retreat or ministry event?  Click here for more information on holding your event at The Cove.

Visit the Chatlos Memorial Chapel, Visitors Center, and Ruth’s Prayer GardenClick here for directions and operating hours. Tours are free.

Follow us on social media. click map

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Kendra Graham Online Bible Study: How Deep Are Your Roots?

 

Matthew 13:5, 20-21 (NASB)

Others fell on the rocky places, where they did not have much soil; and immediately they sprang up, because they had no depth of soil.

The one on whom seed was sown on the rocky places, this is the man who hears the Word and immediately receives it with joy; (21) yet he has no firm root in himself, but is only temporary, and when affliction or persecution arises because of the Word, immediately he falls away.

 What Does it Say?

Others fell on rocky places, not much soil, immediately sprang up, no depth of soil. This is the man who hears the Word and immediately receives it, yet has no firm root; when affliction arises, immediately he falls.

What Does it Mean?

Desert survival has been my focus the last few weeks.  This year, the freezing cold winter has been a desert of sorts to me.  I have learned that God is my shade; He has provided for me in the midst of my struggle (link to broom tree).  I have learned that sometimes God wants to grow me in an unforgiving land to allow me to be a shade to others, as He has been to me (link to acacia).  In light of this, my question for this blog changed a bit.  Instead of studying trees and plants that can survive in the desert, I asked the question, “What trees or plants don’t survive”?

I’ve become obsessed with studying the root systems of desert vegetation!  Both the broom tree and the acacia have root systems that drive deep into the earth to find water where seemingly none exists.  Some  acacia trees have been found to have roots 200 feet below the surface; and with the smallest amount of water they can stay fertile and green, producing fruit in a landscape that is unforgiving and brutally hot.  Not every desert tree has this root system.

On August 11, 2017, my home town of Tucson, Arizona, experienced a microburst– a rain storm that comes up quickly, dumping a lot of water in the desert in a very short amount of time.  In just an hour and half, the skies dumped about a half-inch of water on the hard packed earth of the desert, and this water was accompanied by heavy wind gusts.  Eucalyptus trees on the east side of Tucson fell in such dramatic fashion that reports from locals called it a “war zone.”  I decided to research a bit about this tree that I grew up seeing peppered throughout my city.

The eucalyptus grows incredibly fast and can grow up to 60 feet in height and 25 feet wide.  It’s not uncommon for an eight-year-old Eucalyptus to reach over 18 feet (what a difference from the acacia tree, which takes 20-30 years to grow).  The eucalyptus depends on intentional watering, but can survive on minimal hydration.  This tree will give a luscious, thick-shaded canopy for those desert travelers looking for relief.

A Eucalyptus tree is an impressive sight in the desert: it is more lush than an acacia, and it provides a great deal more shade and cover than a broom tree.  The scented oils from Eucalyptus leaves are quite fragrant.  Who would not be drawn to this tree? Who would not want to be the tall eucalyptus tree that everyone can see for miles and ooh and awe over?

Do not be deceived.  The eucalyptus tree has hidden dangers.  The thick foliage, although beautiful and fragrant, is not just a luxury for the weary traveler. Bee colonies often hide among the greenery and branches, where they thrive and are drawn to make the tree their permanent residence.

The eucalyptus tree has a very shallow root system.  In fact, 90% of the roots of this stately looking tree are found in just the top 12 inches of the rocky desert soil.  Eucalyptus should not be planted near homes or businesses, because the root systems are invasive and can drive into foundations, septic systems and water pipelines. The Eucalyptus tree does what it has to in order to survive; and if that means destroying your family’s incoming water supply or outgoing sewage pipeline, then so be it.

Outwardly, the eucalyptus appears strong as an oak; however, if you look deeper into this tree that shoots up with relative ease in the desert, you’ll come to find that just a half-inch of rain is enough to  topple this huge tree, which can do some pretty severe damage to nearby people and structures on its way down.  (One planned community in Tucson planted Eucalyptus trees because they were fast growing, lush and made the sub-division look like an oasis in the desert; but after just a few years and thousands of dollars in foundation and septic system damage, the residents paid almost a million dollars in eucalyptus tree removal!) Wise landscapers know that Eucalyptus should be planted far away from homes and buildings because of the potential damage it can bring.

When Jesus tells the Parable of the Soils in Matthew 13, He speaks about a shoot that goes up quickly (Matthew 13: 5, 20-21).  As you read these verses, can you see the eucalyptus tree in that description?  We need to be careful about who we are attracted to in the desert, and we need to be careful about who we ourselves settle on becoming.  The eucalyptus trees in the desert look full and beautiful.  Many people are attracted to them for the fine scent they bring and the full shade they provide, but the hidden dangers have to be taken into consideration.  I think it is so profound that in addition to a shallow root system, there can be hidden colonies of bees in a Eucalyptus tree.  (When the trees fell after the microburst in Tucson, the firefighters could not go near some of the trees until the bees had dispersed.) Even when help arrives for those injured by a fallen Eucalyptus, it can be delayed. 

I get it! I want easy.  I want accessible water.  I don’t want to drive down 200 feet into the hard  soil to find the ounce of water I need to survive in the desert, but it is that driving deep for the Living Water of the Word of God that will shore up my roots and give me stability when the wind and rain do come with extreme unrelenting force.  We desire for pastors and churches to feed us so we are not wanting a single thing, but perhaps God desires more.  Perhaps God desires for each of us to go deeper, personally depending on Him and His Word–not solely on what others feed us.  Is that a bad thing?  The eucalyptus tree may give a more complete shade, but is it a safe tree to run to?  Will the eucalyptus tree still stand in the storm?  Sometimes looks are deceiving.

Adversity will come. God allows adversity so that we can see that His Word is true as we hold on through it.  The acacia tree thrives in the water of a flash flood when a foot or more of water rushes through the desert canyons, yet the eucalyptus tree falls with just a half-inch of rain.  Will we stand through the storm and become a shelter for others, or will we fall and damage those around us?  Drive your roots into the Word of God.  Do not be so quick to shake your fist and walk away from a God who loves you and gave His life for you (John 3:16).

Jesus answered and said to her, “If you knew the gift of God and who it is who says to you, ‘Give me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you Living Water” John 4:10 (NASB).

 If you are thirsty in this dry and weary land, Jesus beckons you to ask HIM for the Living Water.  Keep driving deep into His Word, so that the roots you have will last through the storm and allow you to be a shelter for others, not a hazard.

What does it mean to me?

What tree describes you?  An acacia or a eucalyptus tree?

Have you ever had the outward appearance of being a tree of strong faith, while your root system was only surface-deep?

How deeply are your roots planted in the Word of God?  Did you start well but fall away when adversity came?  How will you begin today to replant and drive your roots deeper?

LIVE IT OUT

Today I will seek out the Living Water in the Truth of God’s Word.  From now on, I will not settle for having a shallow root system. I will dive deep into God’s Word, and, with His strength, hold on to Him through the storm.


Click here for a schedule of seminar, concerts, and retreats at The Cove in beautiful Asheville, NC.

Are you a Christian church or non-profit ministry looking for a place to hold your conference, retreat or ministry event?  Click here for more information on holding your event at The Cove.

Visit the Chatlos Memorial Chapel, Visitors Center, and Ruth’s Prayer GardenClick here for directions and operating hours. Tours are free.

Follow us on social media. click map

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Snapshot of Spring Flowers

Sometimes it is just nice to go outside and be reminded of His beautiful creation. We can get so busy that we forget to take the time and just look around. I am reminded of the verse from Psalm 46:10, ” He says, “Be still, and know that I am God…  

Our earth is His garden. We are so blessed to be able to live in such beauty.

The Cove is filled with many different types of plants and flowers.

Even the drive is peaceful and just so relaxing!

Hope you enjoyed a few of these pictures from today! It has been raining quite a bit in Asheville these past few weeks,  but it has given us such beauty!


Click here for a schedule of seminar, concerts, and retreats at The Cove in beautiful Asheville, NC.

Are you a Christian church or non-profit ministry looking for a place to hold your conference, retreat or ministry event?  Click here for more information on holding your event at The Cove.

Visit the Chatlos Memorial Chapel, Visitors Center, and Ruth’s Prayer GardenClick here for directions and operating hours. Tours are free.

Follow us on social media. click map

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Saturday Snapshot: Shepherd’s Inn

The Cove has two beautiful Inns where guests can spend time away from the distractions of the world and be in a quiet place to hear from The Lord.  The Inns have a gorgeous rustic mountain design that is complete with beautiful finishes. The guest rooms combine the charm of the mountains and gracious comfort of the finest country inns.

The Inn suites have a gas fireplace that is perfect for the cooler weather in the fall and winter.

The Inns are nestled in the forest so you are surrounded by the beauty of God’s creation.

You can stay at the Inns if you are here for an event, seminar, retreat, or with a guest group! You can choose to have the Complete Cove Experience: Package includes lodging, meals, complimentary 24-hour beverages, and materials (including seminar notebook and giveaway book or DVD).  On-property lodging accommodations are available only to registered Cove program participants.

To learn more about The Cove and how to register, please click here! 


Click here for a schedule of seminar, concerts, and retreats at The Cove in beautiful Asheville, NC.

Are you a Christian church or non-profit ministry looking for a place to hold your conference, retreat or ministry event?  Click here for more information on holding your event at The Cove.

Visit the Chatlos Memorial Chapel, Visitors Center, and Ruth’s Prayer GardenClick here for directions and operating hours. Tours are free.

 

Follow us on social media. click map

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Devotional- Rooted in Christ

Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock.”  (Matthew 7:24-25)

When the storms come in your life, are you shaken? It is normal for all of us to experience feeling uncomfortable, unsettled, fearful, heartbroken, or even like the wind has been knocked out of our sails. We will feel the blow. This verse clearly says that the winds blew and beat on that house. When we go through storms, it will sometimes feel like we have been hit mentally, emotionally, and physically. It hurts. We will feel it. Jesus is not saying that we will not feel it. He is telling us that if we are rooted in Him and in His Word that we will not fall. It will not destroy us. He gives us the tools we need to withstand the storm.

He gives us strength. The kind of strength to endure any storm in our lives. “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.” (Psalm 46:1-3)

He gives us peace. A peace that we cannot attain from the world. It is a peace that is lasting. A peace that will cover us! John 14:27 says, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” We have nothing to fear when we are in His presence. When we are rooted in Him. He is the Prince of Peace. He says that,These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)

He gives us joy in the midst of the storm! It is one thing to just get through the storms of life by simply just getting through them. But God offers us to have joy in these tough times. We can have joy because through the storms we are gaining strength.  “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds,  because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.  Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” (James 1:2-4)

It is up to us to study and read His Word. It is our lifeline for everything we need in our lives. After we read it, we must act on it. We must put it to the test and activate it in our lives. The Word says in James 1:22, “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. ” That means that we take His Word and literally stand on what it says. When storms come and we know that they will, we must root  ourselves so deep in Him that it will not shake or move us.  Take some time to memorize some key verses like the ones above to call upon when you need them.  Listen to worship music and give Him thanks for the blessings in your life.  We would also love to encourage you and pray with you. You can click here and we have someone available to chat with you right now!

May God be with you today and always!


Click here for a schedule of seminar, concerts, and retreats at The Cove in beautiful Asheville, NC.

Are you a Christian church or non-profit ministry looking for a place to hold your conference, retreat or ministry event?  Click here for more information on holding your event at The Cove.

Visit the Chatlos Memorial Chapel, Visitors Center, and Ruth’s Prayer GardenClick here for directions and operating hours. Tours are free.

Follow us on social media. click map

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Miracles: A Psalm by Quinn Graham

We have a modern-day psalmist on our hands:  Quinn Graham, Will Graham’s son and Billy Graham’s great-grandson, has written a special  psalm to share. This one, entitled “Miracles,” was inspired by a message Quinn recently heard his dad preach. Enjoy this reminder that God is always working on our behalf.  Miracles are all around us!

Miracles happen all the time

We may see it or not

Miracles happen to you every day

We just need to open our eyes

Miracles aren’t coincidences

Coincidences have no meaning

But miracles have a meaning

You may wonder how you can tell if it’s a miracle or not

All you need to do is open your eyes

Open your eyes so that you can see what God really does

Open your eyes so that you may see the kingdom of heaven

God does miraculous things

We just don’t see them all time

Miracles happen everyday

To you, me, your friend, or maybe even the haters of God

God does miracles for everyone

Miracles change our lives

By: Quinn Graham


Click here for a schedule of seminar, concerts, and retreats at The Cove in beautiful Asheville, NC.

Are you a Christian church or non-profit ministry looking for a place to hold your conference, retreat or ministry event?  Click here for more information on holding your event at The Cove.

Visit the Chatlos Memorial Chapel, Visitors Center, and Ruth’s Prayer GardenClick here for directions and operating hours. Tours are free.

Follow us on social media. click map

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Weekly Bible Verse: John 15: 11

Our Bible verse for the week  comes from John 15:11

“These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.”

Fill your heart and soul with His joy today! He is the giver of life and the more we read His Word and pray, the more we will be filled by Him. His joy is never lacking. It is full!

——————————————————————————–

Click here for a schedule of seminar, concerts, and retreats at The Cove in beautiful Asheville, NC.

Are you a Christian church or non-profit ministry looking for a place to hold your conference, retreat or ministry event?  Click here for more information on holding your event at The Cove.

Visit the Chatlos Memorial Chapel, Visitors Center, and Ruth’s Prayer GardenClick here for directions and operating hours. Tours are free.

Follow us on social media. click map

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Cissie Graham Lynch on the Power of Scripture, Radio and Motherhood

 

Wait, what did she just say?

A few weeks ago, driving in her car with her daughter Margaret in the back seat, Cissie Graham Lynch had a mother moment that brought her to tears: A revelation that there can be a profound connection between her 4-year-old daughter and her famous 99-year-old grandfather, who passed away on Feb. 21.

Cissie had her SiriusXM radio dial locked in to the Billy Graham Channel (145), listening to her late grandfather preach, a comforting experience, especially in light of his passing.

Out of nowhere, Margaret piped up with the urgency that only a 4-year-old can muster from the back seat.

“Mom, mom, Daddy Bill is talking about sin,” Margaret said.

Instantly, Margaret had connected her great-grandfather’s words to the ABC Gospel (an easy and fun way for children to memorize 26 scriptures) that she had just started memorizing that week at the request of her grandfather (Cissie’s father), Franklin Graham.

“A—All have sinned and come short of the glory of God,” Margaret recited Romans 3:23.

Instantly, Cissie’s heart swelled.

“I just started crying,” Cissie said. “Here I am, listening to my grandfather and his great-granddaughter is learning God’s Word. And she makes the connection of the two. And you see at that young age at 4 years old, that seed is being planted.”

It’s a seed Cissie had planted in her own heart at a very young age, watching her parents and grandparents seamlessly incorporate Bible reading and memorization into their everyday lives.

“I have great memories growing up with my dad always having the Bible open in the mornings,” she said, “and my mom always having the Bible open in the mornings.

“Even in their older age, I remember my grandmother (Ruth Bell Graham) memorizing Scripture that would’ve been in like 200-point font so she could see it. The same for my grandfather. He would have Scriptures that were printed out in huge font.”

Galations 6:14 could often be found in big letters on the walls of Billy Graham’s Montreat, North Carolina, log cabin home: “But God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.”

Throughout her life, Cissie always knew there was real value in Scripture memorization, but it took being a mom for her to feel the depth.

“As a mother—this year—that’s the prayer for my children,” said Cissie, who also has son, Austin, who is almost 2. “That I would be able to teach them to know what they believe and why they believe it. And to hide Scripture in their heart.”

Because deep down, she knows that one day, it will be more than just memorized words. It will be needed artillery.

“I was praying over her the other day, when she faces life’s toughest critics or situations or Satan comes to attack her, she’ll be able to recall these Bible verses that have been hidden in her heart since she was 4 years old,” she said.

But when her father, Franklin, challenged all of his 12 grandkids to learn the ABC Gospel, Cissie didn’t think her 4-year-old had enough maturity to start memorizing.

“I kinda put it aside, I thought my child isn’t ready for that,” Cissie said. “She can’t read or write yet. We’ll do that in a couple years.”

Then one day, Cissie saw Margaret’s eyes glued to her cousins reciting verses to her father and thought, why not start now?

And sure enough, a few days after that first SiriusXM connection in the car, it happened again. This time, it was the letter C. “Come to me all who labor and are heavy-laden and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).

“And what Bible verse was (Billy Graham) talking about that day? The same one. And Margaret says “Mom, Daddy Bill. And she quoted the Scripture two times.”

For any parent, these random vignettes are certainly heart-warming and Instagram worthy. But while Cissie felt like sharing this with her world, it was a still, small voice inside her that made more of an impact than all the social media likes and comments.

“As a mom, when life is hectic and life is crazy, you’re screaming at your kids, you’re disciplining them, and your house is a mess, you’re picking up toys over and over, there are days you failed as a mom,” she said. “Did I discipline too hard? Or I didn’t do this right or do that right.

“But God gives us little glimpses in life, saying, you’re on the right track, mom. You’re doing the right thing.”

(Article by: Trevor Freeze )

>> Listen Now: Cissie Graham Lynch: ‘My Mother Has Been Incredible in My Life’

Click here for a schedule of seminar, concerts, and retreats at The Cove in beautiful Asheville, NC.

Are you a Christian church or non-profit ministry looking for a place to hold your conference, retreat or ministry event?  Click here for more information on holding your event at The Cove.

Visit the Chatlos Memorial Chapel, Visitors Center, and Ruth’s Prayer GardenClick here for directions and operating hours. Tours are free.

Follow us on social media. click map

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