May 4, 2014 – The Spirit Ranch Expedition

I’m writing this message in advance of its posting on a Sunday. This particular Sunday will be the conclusion of a 48-hour experience we call the Spirit Ranch Expedition. It will be for 8 couples from a rural town in the panhandle of Texas. Having led similar “retreats” for either men or women, I am looking forward to our first couples’ Expedition.

                                                Spirit ranch Collage

Here is what I know they will be feeling/thinking when they leave on Sunday afternoon.

1. They will be exhausted and energized simultaneously.

2. They will feel “lighter” from leaving some heavy baggage behind, yet they will weigh more because we will feed them like queens and kings.

3. They will have created, rediscovered, and strengthened relationships with their spouses and other couples. But all that will come in second place to the added closeness they will feel with their Creator.

4. They will have received and they will still yearn for MORE…more freedom; more beauty; more knowledge; more Truth. However they will leave with less…less guilt, less pain, less confusion; less deception.

If any of the above appeals to you, let us know. It would be an honor to host you at a Spirit Ranch Expedition.

David Miller Initials



The main Bible passage for sabbatical concepts is Genesis 2:2-3, in which God rested (literally, “ceased” from his labor) after creating the universe.  It is applied to people (Jew and Gentile, slave and free) and even to beasts of burden in one of the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:8-11). All agriculture was stopped during these periods, so even the land itself was given a Sabbath.

Are you kidding?  Even the land was given a rest?  I’ve been told to “give it a rest”, but I think they were really just telling me to shut up.  Well, that’s kinda what this whole thing about “sabbatical” is about.  At least that’s the next step in being able to listen internally.

Sabbatical February 2005

For now, don’t think as a sabbatical as taking a month or year or some other time off from work to write a book or complete a research project or travel around the world.  Those may be good activities, but that’s the point…they are activities…as in action.

Once you are in your sanctuary and you are alone in solitude, then simply…stop. S-T-O-P.  Cease.  Quit.

Huh???  Yes.  Just cease what you are doing.

Here is one of the incredible views on my sabbatical from that bamboo hut in the jungle of Costa Rica.  Do you think I would have ever seen it or dozens of other sights or heard the macaws or howler monkeys or surf crashing on the rocks 50 yards from the hut if I hadn’t have stopped being Mr. CEO for a few days????  Nope.

David Miller Initials



A sanctuary, in its original meaning, is a sacred place.  By extension a sanctuary is a safe haven…a hideaway…a place of safe retreat.

November 2012

For me, unless I am in such a place, it’s difficult to listen to that inner voice that calls.  And such a place could be in the privacy of my home office…or in my truck as I’m parked near a field of bluebonnets…or in the shower as the steaming hot water cascades over my shoulders…or in a bamboo hut in the rain forest of Costa Rica…or in the secluded mountain cabin where I invested several days in listening.

It was in that little New Mexico cabin (see photo) that I was in the 3rd month of grieving the loss of my wife of 40+ years.  But, it was also there that I was seeing the world through fresh eyes.  That inner voice (I hope this isn’t too, too…something…spooky or mystical or far out…but don’t you hear that voice sometimes, too?) was guiding me, giving me clarity because I was taking the time to listen.

I would not have heard the calling during those few days if I had been at work or in a noisy restaurant or at a grandchild’s game or with the TV blaring the latest news or sports or whatever.  I know, that I needed to be hidden away…in a safe haven…in a sanctuary.  So, step one in really listening…find yourself a sanctuary.  It may be as close as your closet or backyard.

Moments with Miller Signature