Everyone knows that information and lessons learned at retreats can help attendees for a lifetime, but getting them to remember and utilize the information is the key to success and a life closer to Christ. It’s simple to learn a lesson, believe in and understand it, then a week later either forget about it or push it in the back of your head. So, while what you teach at a retreat is important, the knowledge they take home afterwards is equally as vital to their growth as Christians. Here are 3 tips to take care of during the day or weekend to ensure your lessons will be remembered, implemented, and lived for years to come.
- Whether your guests are students or adults, singles or couples, first-time attendees or veterans, they must write down notes and ideas. Giving them a small notebook and pen is great for note taking during discussions and can also serve as a journal for writing down a synopsis of the day before they fall asleep. Giving guests an outline of the speaker’s notes can help them to follow along during a lesson. Or, you can also create a study guide with questions to answer at the end of a discussion or on the attendees’ own time to think deeper about lessons taught. Frequently rereading their notes could easily bring the attendees back to that retreat feeling of love, worship, praise, adoration, and closeness with Jesus Christ.
- When teaching a lesson, implement what you’re saying into your attendees’ possible or likely routine. For example, instead of just saying, “This is how to talk with God when you’re in a stressful situation,” say something like, “This is how to talk with God when you’re in a stressful situation, like before a final exam, during your driving test, on a first date, or even in a more serious situation like if your parents are fighting or going through a divorce.” Giving specific examples will make it easier for the kids (and adults) to bring that information home and implement it in their lives.
- Giving prayer tips at your retreat can change a person for a lifetime. All Christians pray, right? But that doesn’t mean we do it correctly, or in the way that Jesus would want. Teaching retreat attendees a daily task such as this one will stick in their brains. Getting back to the feeling of being at a retreat is difficult, but repeating activities that took place there could evoke the thoughts and emotions felt during that unforgettable time.
What are some other ways to help retreat guests remember lessons when they arrive home?