Sorry for the long delay between postings. I’ve had so much going on that life just got in the way.
With so much going on, including the death of my mom last month, I realized I needed to take a pause, to catch my breath, and to refocus. So, in the spirit of St. Ignatius, I made a retreat. If you think you don’t have time to make a retreat, then that’s all the more reason why you should consider it. We are all so busy with so many things that, more often than not, we don’t take time to quiet ourselves. It might be that through the retreat experience, a person can come to know they are moving so fast that they miss God’s presence in their lives.
The retreat was good for me, and I felt like I got what I needed. One thing that I realized is that I hadn’t been as faithful to some of my spiritual practices as I had in the past. An important part of my daily routine is to watch the sunrise each day. It’s a spiritual time for me, a chance to remember God’s love for me and the world, and his care for us. No matter how good or bad my day was yesterday, the rising sun reminds me that I’ve got a chance to be grateful for all that I have been given, and a second chance at trying to be a better person, despite my weaknesses and human frailties.
It was rainy the first morning of my retreat, but on the last day, I peaked out my window and saw that it was clear. I thought I didn’t have a lot of time, so I jumped out of bed, put some clothes on, combed my hair and headed to an enclosed patio that faces east.
In reality, I had more time than I thought, which gave me some moments to pray and journal. I thought I’d share my journal reflection from that Sunday morning with you today.
Two things struck me as I watched for the sun to come up over the horizon. First, there’s a great anticipation that comes with this experience, for those wishing to discern it.
The colors change slowly at first, from darkness to purples to peachy pink or maybe bubble gum pink? Yellows and lavenders too.
Then, at a certain point, things to become brighter. The time is coming. An old and trusted friend that we all take for granted is on the final leg of his trip back to us. There’s power in the waiting.
Once the final seconds come, things move quickly. The horizon becomes brighter and brighter. I sit in the silence of the room, now joined by Kathleen, another early riser.
First a sliver of powerful rays creep over the horizon. This moves fast now, and before you know it, the sun is up in its full glory. In awe once again. Another chance… a day filled with opportunity and hope has come to me, and billions of others.
How many will even stop to notice? How many will appreciate this chance to make this day count more than yesterday, or the day before, or even the one before that?
There are lots of things I can control, like how I will approach this new day, what my attitude towards it will be, what I will fill it with.
But there are lots more to my day that is beyond my control, like the rising and setting of the sun, just to name two.
As I sat there watching the morning spectacle, I was thinking: quiet, still, pregnant with possibilities, another chance. What should I make of it, think of it, hope it to be?