Written by Jim Mathis, Edited by Gary Tenpenny

Six members of the Kansas City CBMC Young Professionals enjoyed a weekend retreat the first weekend in August. The YP group along with CBMC Regional Director, Gary Tenpenny and special guest, Randall Kamp joined a small herd of buffalo, at the Buffalo Ridge Retreat Center near Williamsburg, Kansas. While the bison munched on the prairie grass, the retreaters enjoyed some world-famous Williamsburg Bar-B-Que.

Kamp, President and CEO of KampCo Foods in Oklahoma City, challenged the group with the need for passion in everything we do. The Bible reminds us to work at everything with all of our heart. KampCo is the parent company of Johnny Carino’s Restaurants with five location in Oklahoma and Texas.

Each member was in charge of leading a session. Gary Tenpenny talked about Emotional Intelligence and Phillip Kelly led a session on coaching. Josh Musick, Dane Frazier, Micah Schmidt, Alex Craven and Alex McCaskill each led one of the sessions as part of the ongoing leadership training encouraged by Gary Tenpenny. There was plenty of time for prayer and silent reflection away from the pressures of careers and families.

The grouped shared experiences and bounced around ideas on a variety of topics from marriage and family relationships to a need for regular sabbaticals. In addition to a daily quiet time and a weekly day of rest, there is a need for extended time away. Many pastors and those in academia regularly take months or even a year away from normal activities to reflect, plan, and recharge. The idea that business and professional people need to do the same is a new idea for many.

Often times a sabbatical is forced upon us by a job change, economic downturn, relationships, or even disease like the current pandemic. But seldom do we plan for and embrace an extended time to rest and redirect our lives.

The Book of Leviticus tells us, “For six years sow your fields, and for six years prune your vineyards and gather their crops. 4 But in the seventh year the land is to have a year of sabbath rest, a sabbath to the Lord. Do not sow your fields or prune your vineyards. 5 Do not reap what grows of itself or harvest the grapes of your untended vines. The land is to have a year of rest.”  And then in verse 20, “You may ask, ‘What will we eat in the seventh year if we do not plant or harvest our crops?’ 21 I will send you such a blessing in the sixth year that the land will yield enough for three years. 22 While you plant during the eighth year, you will eat from the old crop and will continue to eat from it until the harvest of the ninth year comes in.”

God’s provision allows for a time of rest, but we need to accept His plan and resist consuming everything we produce in the “Sixth” year. The value of a seventh day of rest, a weekend retreat, or even an extended Sabbatical, cannot be underestimated.