Still

Adults need to take back the idea of retreats.

In my younger years, going on a “retreat” meant cramming into a bus with fellow high school students, driving to some obscure location and spending a weekend involved in group activities and games and competitions and too much eating and not enough sleep.  And in between were special speakers or devotionals designed to keep us  – or get us – on track spiritually.  Those were good times. 

A few years ago I rediscovered the idea of a retreat.  Only now it means going away by myself somewhere, with just my Bible and my journal and lots of quiet time with God.  No games or silly competitions.  No special speakers.  Just me…and God.

My adult retreats give me time to be still, time to get away from the distractions of life and responsibilities.   A few weeks ago I took a long overdue retreat to seek God about some things going on in my life.  After a time of emptying my heart before the Lord, I sat looking out the hotel window that overlooked the Intracoastal waterway. An early summer evening lightening storm lit up the skies.  And I was still.  And I realized that was exactly what my soul needed – to be still in spite of the storms in my life.    No matter what I’m facing or worried about or wondering about, my soul can be still. 

Rediscover the value of a retreat.  And let your soul be still.

Be still, my soul: thy God doth undertake
To guide the future as He has the past.
Thy hope, thy confidence let nothing shake;
All now mysterious shall be bright at last.
Be still, my soul: the waves and winds still know
His voice who ruled them while He dwelt below.

 “Be Still My Soul” –  Katharina von Schlegel, 1697

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