I just returned from my annual retreat today, and thought I’d quickly touch base with you rather than wait until I get unpacked and all that busy stuff that would keep me from you any longer…
This year, I made a kind of private retreat (as opposed to the directed retreats I usually do), but with some other kindred spirits…we gathered in the evenings to share the graces of each day, and formed a little community for the week, holding each other in prayer. I chose to spend most of the rest of the time in silence, just spending time with God without any set agenda. It was wonderful to tend to that “virgin point” deep within myself, as described by Thomas Merton here:
At the center of our being is a point of nothingness which is untouched by sin and by illusion, a point of pure truth, a point or spark which belongs entirely to God, which is never at our disposal, from which God disposes of our lives, which is inaccessible to the fantasies of our own mind or the brutalities of our own will. This little point of nothingness and of absolute poverty is the pure glory of God in us. It is so to speak his name written in us … like a pure diamond, blazing with the invisible light of heaven. It is in everybody, and if we could see it we would see these billions of points of light coming together in the face and blaze of a sun that would make all the darkness and cruelty of life vanish completely.
One of the gifts of retreat was the spontaneous prayer of music…I came into the chapel one day as another sister was playing her guitar…I picked up my native flute, and we began to play together without any verbal planning. A third sister came in, and I handed the flute over to her, while I switched to a frame drum. We prayed together that way for a bit…few words were necessary – something profound happens for me in those kinds of settings. It’s like a oneness in heart, mind and spirit, all encountering the same ultimate mystery that I call God.
May you experience your own sacred moments these days!