What Sets Us Apart

“God has given each of you some special abilities; be sure to use them to help each other, passing on to others God’s many kinds of blessings.” (1 Peter 4:10 TLB).

Through the generous donations of our ministry support partners, A Gift from God provides missionary couples a wonderful place to rest. It is our prayer that they have a once-in-a-lifetime experience as God uses the ministry to shower them with His extravagant love, a quiet and peaceful environment, wonderful amenities, spectacular sunrises and sunsets and great food. They will also have quick, easy access to scenic Carlsbad beaches, restaurants, shopping and attractions. To facilitate an enhanced experienced, we ask each couple awarded a sabbatical retreat to:

  • Focus on relaxation and mental, physical, and spiritual recovery

  • Renew their intimacy with God and Jesus Christ

  • Spend time revitalizing their marriage

  • Enjoy the natural beauty of their surroundings

The self-directed sabbatical retreat activities require couples to spend 4-6 hours each day in activities that will strengthen both their personal and professional lives. Activities include but are not limited to: Alone time with God (talking and listening), Bible study, prayer walks, private praise, worship, and thanksgiving, praying and reading the Word, and writing to God. These activities should help couples by facilitating healing, restoration, and intimacy with God and with each other.

Officers of the Board

“The mouth of the righteous speaks wisdom, And his tongue talks of justice. The law of his God is in his heart; None of his steps shall slide.” (Psalms 37:30–31, NKJV)

Karen Jones Selman
Karen Jones SelmanDirector/CEO/Co-Founder
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John B. Simmons
John B. SimmonsDirector/Treasurer
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Archie L. Collins
Archie L. CollinsDirector/CPO
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Gary L Selman
Gary L SelmanSecretary/Co-Founder
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Our Biblical Standards and Financial Practices

“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.” (Colossians 3:23–24, NIV)

We believe that everything we have belongs to God and that as Christians we have a responsibility to give back to others what God has given to us. In doing so, we are committed to providing complete transparency and maintaining integrity over our financial practices and over all that God has entrusted us with.

We are committed to operating using sound Biblical standards and recognize our accountability both to God and to our donors. We are committed to using our contributions faithfully and wisely. We are committed to making our financial statements and the annual IRS Form 990 available on our website and to all who request them. A Gift from God officially opened its doors on January 6, 2020 for their first year of operation. Click on the links below to view our annual information return (Form 990) and this year’s budget projections.

View Form 990N
View 2020-2021 Budget Projections

Our Story

God’s Vision, Our Faith


It had been at least ten years since Gary and I had our last get away. We were mentally, physically, emotionally exhausted. As the Lord would have it, in October 2013, the opportunity arose for us to take a much needed trip to Carlsbad, CA., a quaint little seaside town 45 minutes north of San Diego. After 10 days of regular walks on the beach, dolphin watching from our balcony, and gazing at gorgeous sunrises and sunsets, we returned home revitalized and with a renewed sense of purpose.


After returning home, we couldn’t stop talking about our retreat experience and how much it had renewed our spirits. As we continued to reflect on the trip and praise God for His provision, the Holy Spirit began to minister to me about giving Christian missionary couples an opportunity to experience what we had just experienced – restoration, rejuvenation, relaxation, and healing.  This vision was quite a surprise to me, but I received it with joy and excitement. When I shared it with Gary, he was just as excited as I was and without hesitation pledged his full support. From that time until now God’s vision became my passion and my passion became my calling; a calling which we both believed God would manifest in His time and in His way.


There is something very serene and captivating about Carlsbad. This new found place felt like home and had become a place we longed to visit again. On April 30, 2014, we were blessed to make a second trip to Carlsbad, lodging at the very same condo we had rented a few months earlier. This trip was different for us because we were more rested and energetic which led us to do a lot more exploring.


On April 30, 2019, exactly 5 years after our second trip to Carlsbad, we filed the Articles of Incorporation for A Gift from God, Inc. with the California Secretary of State and our charity was formed.


A Gift from God, Inc. launched their website and began their first fundraising campaign to meet their 2020 budget which includes serving 6 missionary couples / 6 sabbaticals.

“The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters.”

(Psalms 23:1-2)

Restore your souls. Renew your strength.

“Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall, but those who wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint. (Isaiah 40:30–31, MEV)