YPM blog

I Need a Sign… A Phone Call

Sweet Nancy fills my heart and my soulI Need a Sign… Part III of A Skywriter, A Billboard, A Bumper Sticker and A Phone Call

This time God dialed in through A PHONE CALL…

It was March 2011 about a year after I had the privilege of presenting my very first Women’s retreat. I set this goal, dream actually, in 2008, to help other women find joy, purpose and fulfillment. THIS, I believed would be my mission forward. This vision was rooted in my faith. I hoped that through this retreat process and the sharing of my own life stories others would see God and all his goodness.

In August of 2009, my friend Nancy and I were sitting on a balcony overlooking the San Diego harbor sipping a glass of Chardonnay. Nancy looked at me and said with direct inquisition, “So, Rob, you have been talking about this retreat stuff for a while now, when is the first one going to take place?” I understood. Dreams are good. They set direction and focus to our goals, but it was up to me to set a concrete date to my plan in order to advance the dream. Nancy was right. Together we set a date and agreed the first retreat would take place in Nancy’s retreat-like living room. There was new fire within me to complete the itinerary for the 2-day event. All my focus was directed toward making that dream come alive.

Naming the retreat was part of the creative process as well. The name was claimed after attending a creative workshop with a group of dear friends. It would be “ALL IN.” Yes, ALL IN RETREATS™. The acronym “A.I.R.” seemed completely appropriate. I could see women coming to this retreat seeking fulfillment, purpose and meaningful dreams as much as they sought AIR itself, (to borrow a page from Socrates’ book).

The retreat was just about a week away and road blocks were popping up right and left. I consulted friends for prayer. I was determined to stay the course. The day before the event, a snow and ice storm moved in. Nancy’s living room was a 2 hour trip for some of us. I consulted the travelers. They were “ALL IN.” We traveled through the storm in faith. The retreat took place for two glorious days. As we experienced the very first ALL IN RETREAT together our hearts were filled with song, inspiration, new dreams and pure delight fueled by the hope that our dreams are possible.

Even so, about a year after the first retreat and several subsequent others, I was beginning to doubt if this retreat business was my purpose or was it just a frivolous dream? I was working to get other retreats scheduled but it seemed people were too busy or perhaps just not ready for the topics at hand. I was getting discouraged, so what did I do? Yup, I asked God to give me a sign. “God please make it clear if this dream is about you and not about me. I need a sign.”

The very next morning, March 4, 2011, at 7:15 am, I was on my way to a breakfast meeting and my friend Nancy called. This was very unusual time to hear from her. Her immediate question to me, “Hey Rob, have you ever researched the meaning of the words ‘all in?’” Really? She called me at 7:15 am to ask me this question after I prayed for a sign the night before?

My answer to her, “no, but something tells me you have.” She was reading the book Aspire, by Kevin Hall (a must read!) and in the foreword was the definition of All In. This is what she read to me that very morning…

“The word Ollin is a word of depth from the Aztecs. It described a powerful event, like an earthquake or a great storm that shakes the earth. It conveys intense and immediate movement. Ollin means to move and act now with all your heart.

To experience Ollin you have to get All In. Global words such as this can unite a people throughout the world with a common language.”

So my goal was and is to move women’s hearts in intense and immediate ways using the common language of love. I believed that the retreats would begin locally with a message that could be embraced universally. And WOW, there it was. My answer in Kevin Hall’s book shared through my friend Nancy on a phone call the very morning after I asked for a sign. So not only am I grateful for God’s messages, I am also grateful for dear friends who are prompted and committed to deliver them.

God hears our requests. We just have to believe that when the answers come they are personal not just coincidence. They are sent especially for us.


Have you ever asked for clarity and received an answer in a simple yet miraculous way? I’d love to hear about it and celebrate it with you!

Do you have a friend who believes in your dreams and vision? I would LOVE to cheer you on if you want to share your dream!!