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CARLOCK - Most makeovers include new makeup and a haircut, losing weight or even plastic surgery.

But the extreme makeovers taking place at the 2006 Community Women's Retreat Saturday had little to do with physical changes.

"The focus is on God changing us from the inside," said organizer Sandy McKinley, adding, "2 Corinthians 5:17 says we are a new creation in Christ and that is what inspired the theme of Extreme Makeover."

In its 20th year, more than 300 women gathered at East White Oak Bible Church for the one-day event that included a series of morning and afternoon workshops geared toward helping women make positive changes in their lives.

"We need to replenish and revive, and we do that by saturating ourselves in God's word," said one of the speakers, Lesley King. "We need to ask Him to change us and even though it might be sacrificial, the outcome will be worth it."

Teann Downen of Secor said after she listened to speaker Becky Glenn, she knew she had to confront and confess her need to change and then commit to making them.

"I definitely need to spend more time" with the Bible," she said. "I've just been dry for a while and I need to make a new commitment to get back into it."

Downen said between work and taking care of her 4-year-old, it can be hard to make time to read the Bible. "But I know I just need to make a date with God. I'm just going to make an appointment with Him to make sure it happens," she said.

Jane Johnson of Bloomington, who is Sandy McKinley's sister, said change begins when we pray and study the Bible.

"I've learned a lot about getting a make over within," she said. "I'm going to take it step by step, one day at a time."

Johnson said she remembers when just 15 women attended the retreat its first year at Lake Bloomington.

"It's fabulous that it's really grown," she said. "It's just a really uplifting time where you're always learning something."

Normal Community West Sophomore Jackie Evans attended with her mom and both decided they need to get up and read the Bible together every morning.

"I learned this morning that even though sometimes it feels like God isn't there, He is," she said. "You just have to keep reading the Bible."


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