Posts Tagged With: beauty

Thin Places

Last night marked the [almost] end to staff training with worship, communion, and staff commissioning.  It was a great night for many reasons, one of which being the reminder of the thin places.

1-DSC_4368thin place: those rare locals where the distance between heaven and earth collapses

Moses received the ten commandments on the top of the mountain. Jesus frequently went to the top of the mountain to pray.  Ancient churches were frequently built as high a possible on a hill or mountain.  Thin places.

paigerailey-42-3There is something about being in nature, particularly on a mountain, that allows you to feel God’s presence.  Are you physically closer to heaven? Probably not.  But thin places require struggle.  Thin places mean giving up control.  Thin places mean surrendering ourselves so that we may more fully experience God.

1-DSC_3991 I believe Asbury Hills is one of those places.  One of those places where God seems just a little bit more available. personable. present.

paigerailey-46-3We are on pace for 1100 campers to gather at Asbury Hills this summer.  Welcome.  Be ready to meet God.

Categories: Retreats | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

10 Questions with Katie Stanczak

If you’ve called the Asbury Hills phone number, chances are very good you have spoken with Katie.  She handles all summer camp registrations and retreat group logistics.  She is also overall amazing and keeps things running smoothly.

Katie grew up in a small town just outside of Gainesville, Florida with four siblings.  She studied Family, Youth, and Community Science at the University of Florida with a minor in nonprofit management and is about to celebrate her one-year wedding anniversary with fellow Asbury Hills staffer Joseph Stanczak.

superhero weddingHere are 10 questions with Katie:

1. What is your favorite superhero?
Captain America

2. If you could have any superpower, what would it be?
Hmmmm, that is a tough question. I would have to say the ability to go through solid objects – trees, walls, cars, etc.

3. Have you played any sports?
Yes! I played soccer growing up both for school teams as well as traveling club teams.  I also played volleyball in both middle and high school.

4. What are your hobbies?
I enjoy spending time outdoors, hiking and running, as well as reading and crafting.

snow5. Favorite movie?
I don’t think I can pick one favorite movie.  I do enjoy watching all things Disney!

6. Favorite vacation spot?
Disney World.  I’ve decided I will never be too old to enjoy a trip to Disney.

7. If you had to live off one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Potatoes. I love that potatoes can be turned into so many different dishes. I love mashed potatoes, fries, baked potatoes, chips…

8. Favorite TV show?
Downton Abbey. I enjoy shows that are set in earlier time periods.

9. Favorite thing about Asbury Hills?
I love how peaceful Asbury Hills is.  Stress just seems to disappear here.  The lake and mountain chapels are my favorite spots on camp.

10. What are you most looking forward to about the next year?
I am looking forward to sharing Asbury Hills with new retreat groups, families, and summer campers!


Categories: Asbury Hills, Retreats, Summer Camp | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Beautiful Things

On my way up to Asbury Hills, a song came on the radio – Beautiful Things by Gungor.  I’ve heard the song numerous times but for some reason, this song struck a chord with me that morning.  Maybe it was the way the sun was coming through the trees.


Or the way a retreat group was enjoying fellowship following their meal.


Or the thought that the creek that runs through Asbury Hills continues to flow whether we notice it or not, but when we do pay attention, we realize how wonderful Matthew’s Creek really is.


Whatever it was, I realized that this is what Asbury Hills is all about.  Whether you are a hiker, camper, staff member, retreat guest, or someone who got lost on their way to Caesar’s Head and stopped to ask for directions – Asbury Hills is a place where God continues the work of making beautiful things out of us, AND we are able to be still enough to notice.

Categories: Asbury Hills, Retreats, Summer Camp | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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