All this week, begin in silence, turning your attention to God. God’s clear promise is to be with us always. Most of us still find it challenging to stay aware of and connected to that reality. Brother Lawrence spoke of “practicing” the presence of God in the hope that awareness of God’s presence and companionship would increasingly pervade his every waking moment. As you “practice” awareness of God with you, use your body and your surroundings to help you. Opening your hands (palms up) in your lap can signal receptivity. Lighting a candle can remind you of the Invisible Other, God in the room with you. Enjoy God as God enjoys you.
The angel of the Lord came back a second time and touched (Elijah) and said, “Get up and eat, for the journey is too much for you.” So he got up and ate and drank. Strengthened by that food, he traveled forty days and forty nights until he reached Horeb, the mountain of God. There he went into a cave and spent the night.
1 Kings 19:7-9
Recall that just before these verses, Elijah had lay down under a broom bush, calling it quits on life. The pressure around him was too much for him. His resilience was stripped. He was done. The Lord, however, was not done with Elijah. The Lord responded to Elijah’s weariness with loving attention, long sleeps and nourishing meals, and now begins to cast vision for a next leg of Elijah’s journey.
As our “resilience reservoirs” begin to fill, resilience ultimately activates with a vision for something worthwhile ahead, something worth the work of bouncing back. It’s not clear at this point in Elijah’s story how much Elijah knew of where he was headed, but with the strength of God’s loving attention to his immediate needs and a sense of invitation from God for the future, he rejoins his journey.
To the extent that you feel the pull to “tap out” under the pressures you experience, what is worth the work of bouncing back in your life? Take time to recall and to name both immediate and long-term hopes you hold about your life, what you might yet accomplish and who you are becoming. Giving voice to deep hopes -- including possibly a sense of connection to our ultimate purpose in life -- can feel vulnerable. If it helps you to loosen your internal hesitance, set a 5-minute timer and seek to write without stopping about hopes you hold.
As you close your time, share your thoughts with God as you would with a friend...and open your awareness for God’s interaction with you. How do you imagine God listening? What posture does God take toward you? What do you feel coming from God to you? Is there anything you sense God affirming or highlighting amongst your hopes...or reminding you to add?
Scripture wisely instructs us to make the spiritual journey with others for the help and support of companionship. As you invest time in personal reflection, invest also in communal connection. Join our 12 PM Zoom Challenge Gathering today (and everyday, Monday - Friday) and/or with your household, your small group, a friend,...
- Share how it feels to be invited and encouraged to “the journey ahead” today. (e.g. exciting, intimidating, burdensome,...)
- Share a hoped-for outcome in your life that you experience as worth fighting for. What about it makes it worth that energy investment?
Join us on Zoom: Monday - Friday at 12 PM
Meeting ID: 818 5542 9409