Silence helps to quiet the mind and heart

From the Desk of Father David

Dear Friends in Christ,

                 Does your life feel fragmented? The Scriptures this weekend call us to be holy. The word holy comes from the root word to be whole. To be holy means to be totally dedicated to God. Remember the first commandment from Jesus; “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” (Mark 12:30-31)  Therefore, the challenge is not just to have one part but our whole life dedicated to God. To name a few, are our work/school, leisure, emotions dedicated to God? Jesus holds us together and renews our relationships.

A young man talked with me about having trouble with being short tempered with his wife and children. When I saw him six months later, he shared with me how he changed his life for the better. Everyday when he came home from work no one was allowed to talk to him for ten minutes unless blood was involved. During that time he would change his clothes and put on clothes he would never wear to work. As he hung up his work clothes he would ask God to help him to make a break between work and home and also ask God to help him be totally present to his wife and children. Noticed that he combined the physical by using different clothes as a reminder, the spiritual by praying and silence to calm his emotions as a way of allowing God to make a major change in his life.

Silence helps to quiet the mind and heart so we can better hear the voice of God and be present to those around us. I would suggest you start with three minutes and then work your way up to ten minutes or more. An easy way to do this is find a quiet place that has few distractions. Pick a word or phrase from the Bible.  Closing your eyes or focusing them on a picture or object can help eliminate distractions.  Count up to ten, one number for each breath in and out.  Then replace the number with the phrase or word you chose from Scripture.  Or you might want to use Jesus’ name or one of His titles like Light of the World, Bread of Life.  At the end of your prayer time simply recite an Our Father, Hail Mary or your own prayer slowly. Try this for ten days and reflect upon your experience.  An app which can help you prayer this way is called Centering Prayer.

Almighty God as we begin this Lenten Season give us Your assistance to find the silence that truly connects us to You and gives meaning to all of our action.  Please come to our aid and the aid of our church and world.        

Peace,

Fr. David

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