It’s 10:42 p.m. Sunday night. I’m reporting to work at a summer camp at 8:30 a.m. Monday morning. I’m tired from staffing weekend long retreat and my deadline is another to-do on my list before I get some much needed rest.
So here it goes:
Go to the website.
Create new post.
Queue up some inspirational Christian music.
Forget that the jeans I need are dirty.
Run the washer.
Return to computer.
Check Facebook & Twitter.
Stare at the ceiling.
Type the opening sentence over and over.
Read it over.
Move clothes to the dryer.
Skip to the concluding sentence.
Revisit the topic sentence.
Close eyes and breathe in and out.
It’s now 10:57 p.m. and I’m stuck with seemingly the same thing – nothing.
I open my journal trying to search for something, some tidbit of knowledge from the weekend at a retreat when the pages seem to fall open a few pages earlier. It’s page from a book of daily Catholic devotions dated Monday, July 9. The paper carefully taped into the lined pages, the edges neatly cut with scissors. It mattered, I saved it for a reason.
Then, my eyes fall to the title: Leaving Room For God.
Yep, it was one of those moments. That moment when you realize the homily is personally directed towards you, the readings offer you a piece of advice to fix that nagging problem and the minute the second verse of the preparation hymn is just to unexplainable beautiful. (I have personally taken the time to call this the “lightning bolt of clarity” but in reality, it’s the work of the Holy Spirit – just so we’re on the same page).
“In our busy cities, in the midst of our jobs, God is there. His love comes to any one of us, quietly but deeply, in the silence we make for him. It is as simple as opening one’s heart to the warm mysteries of life. We need to slow down and leave room for God to speak, and for us to listen.”
-Father James Stephen Behrens, O.C.S.O.
Silence can find us in the most diverse places. I signed up to staff a retreat – Aggie Awakening 95 (Whoop!) – this weekend and found myself a part of a short Eucharistic procession with the priest, seminarians and others from another building back to the church where Perpetual Adoration would take place.
It was dark. The footsteps on the gravel ground was the only sound besides the bells ringing announcing the presence of Jesus. The candle light illuminated the pathway back to the church and the incense rose through the air. It hit me – It was me and Jesus.
Under a twinkling blanket of stars I found a sort of silence that only God can provide.
So, my lightning bolt moment of clarity? – Don’t procrastinate, no, but seriously – in the most unexpected ways can silence reveal to you the presence of God. He never stops speaking to us, caring for us or enfolding us in his loving arms. We only need to look past the noise, the clutter and the busy nature of our lives to find him.
And in the silence you’ll never know what you’ll receive. It may just be the inspiration for your deadline.