Seminars and Conferences
National Institute of Marriagehttp://nationalmarriage.com/
Dr. Gary Smalley says, "The National Institute of Marriage is the most effective marriage restoration ministry that I know of in America." Although NIM offers services ranging from counseling to enrichment conferences, our experience with NIM was through their Marriage Intensive. About 8 weeks into our journey, we were blessed to be able to attend a Couples Intensive in Rome, GA. It was a 4 day marriage counseling program that consisted of 30+ hours with two marriage counselors and 4 other couples. This program is designed to save marriages in crisis, and it works!
Love And Laughterwww.smalley.cc
Dr. Gary Smalley has been one of the leading experts in marriage ministry for decades. He has authored 60-70 books, and continues to lead conferences across the country. We recommend reading anything that he has written, and also encourage you to go out of your way to attend one of his conferences. Although he speaks on many marriage related topics, we had the privilege of attending his two-day "Love and Laughter" seminar in January 2012. He co-taught the event with his Branson, MO pastor, Ted Cunningham, and we laughed until our sides hurt. It was like stand-up comedy with a wealth of teaching. It was one of the best weekends of our entire marriage!
Gary Chapman's A Growing Marriage Seminarwww.garychapman.org
Gary Chapman is in the same league as Gary Smalley, and I would endorse anything that he has done. His very popular "Growing Marriage Seminar" focuses on communication, physical intimacy, and his famous "Five Love Languages." We have not had the privilege of attendingone of his conferences yet, but have had numerous friends and family members attend and return with raving reviews. A complete calendar of his events can be found on his website.
Wild At Heart Boot Campwww.ransomedheart.com
I (Rusty) had heard of John Eldredge for years, and even read his bestselling Wild At Heart book years ago. On a whim I decided to enter my name in the lottery to attend the Wild At Heart Boot Camp in Fraser, Colorado. Honestly, I didn't even know what I was signing up for! God obviously wanted me to attend, because I received confirmation several weeks later that I had been accepted. So, me and 450 of my closest male friends (I am kidding...I didn't know a single person and I was the only person from the state of Mississippi), spent 4 days in the mountains of Colorado learning what life is all about. If you are looking for a place to get away and reconnect with God, this is the event for you!
*The women's version of the Wild At Heart Boot Camp is called "Captivating." Information on both events can be found at the Ransomed Heart website.
WinShape is a tremendous resource for all marriages. Their retreat center in Rome, GA happens to be where we attended our Marriage Intensive, but WinShape offers a wide variety of marriage events. There is something for the engaged couple, the happily married couple, and the couple in crisis mode. You will enjoy exploring the different opportunities for marital growth through adventure that WinShape offers.
Family Life - Weekend to Rememberhttp://www.familylife.com/events/featured-events/weekend-to-remember
Unfortunately, we have not had the opportunity to attend a Weekend to Remember, but it is high on our list of events to attend in the near future. This "Weekend Getaway" offered through Family Life is worth looking into. You will hopefully be able to find one of these events in your area. If you go before we do, let us know what you think!