I came across this post yesterday and thought I'd share a bit of it here. (Read the whole thing; it's excellent.) It reminded me of my efforts to explain my eight days of silence to my friends when I stopped by my seminary for some visiting and dinner on my long drive home across the state of Pennsylvania. And it gave me a boost of hope for my next retreat, the one coming up in a few weeks. Three point five, to be exact.
The following is from the post, part of the closing homily for a similar retreat at a place well known to at least one good friend (and of which I myself have been known to dream on occasion):
Though your stories of chaos and suffering are different from Paul’s, they are equal in dignity and worthiness. In other words, your pain and suffering are as real and as important as his, and thanks be to God that you came on this retreat to be with Jesus Christ. It takes real courage to do that and to let yourselves be vulnerable to the one who heals and saves. I don’t know what happened with each of you this week. God may have done numerous things with you. Perhaps Christ has saved you from something; perhaps he has saved you for something. All I know is you are here and you sought to be with the God who continues to create, to save, and to sustain you. I pray that you treasure this time with the Lord as you move forward into your summer season.
When I scheduled this retreat last winter, it was with the hope that I'd be pastoring a church by now and with the thought that midsummer would be the easiest time to drop out of sight for several days.
Guess I'll be contemplating some things I hadn't exactly planned on.
So what else is new?