Saturday, March 8, 2008

Renewal

The sheet had 39 names, by mine I wrote "renewal-- spiritual exercises."

It had been a hectic week with hectic days to come and I let the spiritual exercises slip from my life. Unexpected car problems led to cancelling my Thursday meeting with my spiritual director. My perfect attendance gone, a streak started at the end of August. My stained glass project spelling out Joy was completely stalled. Too much of my limited free time distracting myself on the computer.

So, I wrote I needed prayers for strength and renewal and then I sat and listened to what everyone one else at Mensch Mill retreat center desired in their life. We were a needy group. 25 minutes later, I went to Hannah's prayer in 1st Samuel and prayed. Then something became clear. All the above happened after I had (in imaginative prayer) told Jesus I would never desert him, and he had answered, "yes you will." I had fallen away from Jesus and the spiritual exercises. I was truly in a dry place when I wrote that last post.

Maybe I needed that time. I had imagined fleeing from his side after the arrest, and it had taken hold.

At Mensch I found myself in a small group with some friends from past retreats, and I spoke of where I was finding myself. I used the 20 hours to ask for renewal.

But where do I go from here? During the week before entering Jerusalem with Jesus, I asked myself this question... Do you know Jesus well enough to travel to the cross with him as his friend.

Where am I now? Jesus has been arrested and I am not by his side. Do I come back to him, or am I with the others who fled listening to news reports on what is happening? I am curious as to where my imagination will take me. What feels right in my soul?

2 comments:

  1. Are you sure it's just your "imagination" taking you on these journeys or the Spirit, Himself, flowing from some deeper place within you? In my early days of "old-time holiness", people put God in a nutshell, as if there was only one experience whereby men might know Him. Along the way, I have learned it is "merely" the same Holy Ghost whom we all express in different terms. You feed my soul, my friend, and I wish you God-speed, God-peace as you go. I'm enjoying the read...

    ReplyDelete
  2. Jim-- I am sure it was not just my imagination. It is a prayer technique favored by Ignatius, who felt it led to being closer to God.

    ReplyDelete

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