How to Turn a DVD Study Into a Special Event

by | Nov 12, 2016

Host your own special event! Directions for turning Joanna Weaver's DVD Study into a Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World Retreat

Would you like to host an event for your women?

I’m so honored to have Jana Kennedy-Spicer of Sweet to the Soul Ministries share how she used my DVD study to create a special event for the ladies of her church.

I first met Jana while scrolling through Pinterest. I came across a post about how she’d used Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World as the theme for a retreat.

The graphics and concept was so beautiful, I reached out to her. (There’s more to that story, which we’ll share at a later time – love how God works!)

I’m excited to have Jana share how she created the event, along with instructions on how you can host your own “Mary Heart Retreat.”

Guest Post by Jana Kennedy-Spicer

Some books you pick up and your life is forever changed. For me, Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World is one of those books.

I have read and re-read this book, gifted it to many of my friends, completed the DVD study, watched the teaching videos and all the bonus videos. And each time I visit, God reveals something new.

Today, though, I’d love to share with you about part of the amazing bonus material available to you for free.

Turning a DVD Study Into a Special Event

Have you ever attended a women’s church retreat? Or planned and organized a retreat or similar type event? If so, you have seen the tremendous amount of work put into executing such an event. As well as the beautiful outcome of a God-centered gathering of women.

Host your own special event! Directions for turning Joanna Weaver's DVD Study into a Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World Retreat

When I began planning a weekend retreat for the ladies of our church, my immediate theme choice was Having A Mary Heart in a Martha World. I was prepared to take quite a bit of time converting the 10-week study into four or five mini-study sessions. So, imagine my surprise when I discovered Joanna had already done this for me. Ok, for anyone.

The retreat option includes:

It was as though Joanna had thought of everything someone would need to host an event. Even the promotional pieces are designed in such a way that you just open the files and plug in your event information.

Making the Retreat Your Own

As I went through the planning process for our retreat, these tools were invaluable. In the Retreat Guide, several schedule options are laid out. We used the day and a half option and planned our retreat for Friday evening and all day Saturday.

Because I am a creative and crafty person, I came up with a particular look for our event so I used the promotional materials as templates to follow that theme. Likewise, I used the retreat journal content to create our own stylized journal and added our church ministry information.

Host your own special event! Directions for turning Joanna Weaver's DVD Study into a Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World Retreat


To get this amazing FREE “Retreat Graphic Package” (fully editable), register and watch the “Mary-Hearted Leader Webinar”:

Choosing Decorations

Because I love mason jars, sunflowers and chalk boards, these were the items I wanted to use for our retreat. Here are some ways we used all three to carry out the theme.

To get directions and more details on how to create the decorations, I’ve written a detailed blog post about the event over at Sweet to the Soul Ministries.

Host your own special event! Directions for turning Joanna Weaver's DVD Study into a Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World Retreat. www.JoannaWeaverBooks.comHost your own special event! Directions for turning Joanna Weaver's DVD Study into a Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World Retreat[NOTE from JOANNA: Okay, so that detailed blog post Jana just mentioned…You’ve got to see it! She not only shows us more beautiful images from the event, she gives instructions for creating the chalkboard signs as well as the Prayer Wall described below. Pin, share and file this stuff, girls! It’s amazing.]

Welcoming God’s Presence

One of my favorite settings at our retreat was our Prayer Wall. The wall itself was made of reclaimed wood supported by a pallet frame.

I took our memory verse, Matthew 11:28, and lettered it across several chalkboards then hung them in an interesting configuration. Nails were added all over the wall to hold prayer request tags. Sitting in front of the wall was a small table with pens and blank tags on which the ladies could write prayers and hang on the wall.

Host your own special event! Directions for turning Joanna Weaver's DVD Study into a Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World Retreat

If a full weekend retreat sounds a little intimidating, Joanna also provides information on planning a shorter event or leading a study group. To learn more about the DVD study and access all the free resources Joanna provides, go to

Oh, and did I mention, these fabulous “Retreat Option” resources are also available for Joanna’s other books as well! Check out the Retreat Guides and Journals for each DVD study below:

Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World: Finding Intimacy with God in the Busyness of Life

Having a Mary Spirit: Allowing God to Change Us from the Inside Out

Lazarus Awakening: Finding Your Place in the Heart of God

You can do this! You can create an event for your women in your church. Don’t be afraid to step out and do something you’ve never done before. With Joanna’s retreat options, you’ll have everything you need.


Jana Kennedy-Spicer

Turn Any DVD Study Into a Special Event!

Thanks so much, Jana! I’m so blessed and inspired by what you’ve created, I think I may have to create a special event for my own ladies. I hope you readers are inspired as well!

And here’s the cool thing…you don’t have to use my studies to create an event. You can turn any DVD study into a special event by following these suggestions:

  1. Ask God to reveal what topic He desires for your event.
  2. Find a DVD study that fits what the Lord has shown you.
  3. Determine theme and decorations.
  4. Study my retreat guides to see what elements or types of activities you might want to include.
  5. Create a schedule for your event. Determine the following:
    • How long? 2-day, 1-day or 1/2 day event
    • How many sessions? Depends on length of event and length of teaching
  6. Watch the DVD study teaching sessions. Ask the Holy Spirit to show you which sessions to build your event around.
  7. Build discussion questions, activities, and/or breakout sessions around the teaching material.
  8. Choose date for event and secure a location.
  9. Start promoting at least 3 weeks before the event. (See more tips in retreat guides.)
  10. Have an incredible, life-changing time with Jesus and your ladies!

Never underestimate the power of special events. Something special when we create opportunities for women to encounter a living, loving God.

If you’ve never hosted an event, ask for permission then gather a team of like-hearted women to begin praying about what God might have in mind. Then go for it, my friend! And watch what God will do.

let-your-light-shineLearn More About Jana

Jana Kennedy-Spicer is a priceless gift to me. God brought her into my life in answer to a desperate prayer for an online friend. She’s not only beautified my online presence with her graphics and generously shared her marketing savvy as well, she’s become a dear, dear friend.

I hope you’ll go to her website and check out her ministry, Sweet To The Soul.

Jana is a wife, mom and Nana who is passionate about inspiring and encouraging women on their daily walk with Christ. A woman rescued and repaired by the grace of God, she loves to share about the realness of God’s love, redemption and faithfulness. Through her new devotional, Let Your Light Shine, God’s light is flooding dark places as all proceeds go to provide free Bible study materials to women incarcerated or living in shelters.

Learn more about Jana’s Sweet to the Soul Ministry and check out her beautiful graphic posts on Facebook, InstagramTwitter and Pinterest.


I’d love to hear from you…What was the best thing about your last ladies’ event?

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