Finding solitude in the midst of our busy lives is, first and foremost, always an intentional activity. We must choose to go away to a place in the country, to a retreat house, to a to a chapel, to a walking trail. Or we must choose to create a space of sacred solitude within our everyday lives, which is where we find ourselves most of the time.
We all need times of solitude in our lives for three interconnected reasons: We need to quiet the world. We need to quiet ourselves. And we need to do both of those things so we can better listen for God as he whispers our names and quietly lets us know just what it is we’re supposed to be doing with our lives.
Like Jesus, we need to have our “lonely place,” that quiet sacred space we can go, not just to get away from the world and its busy-ness, but to prepare ourselves more fully for our engagement in the world.
By Your Side: A Way of the Cross for Teens, just released this week, is a re-issue of an earlier publication as a booklet and musical/spoken word CD by ILP Music, produced by Vince Ambrosetti with music by Ruben Galabeas and Msgr. Michael Heras.
We are called to live our lives as if every day could be our last. As if every grudge we hold will never have a chance to be removed if we don’t act immediately. As if every word spoken in anger can never be taken back if we don’t act now. As if every sin will eternally leave us more burdened and further removed from God and those around us if we don’t seek forgiveness today.
So that’s my challenge to myself this lent – to come before God in prayer more often than I do now, and to present myself in that divine presence in a way that recognizes that God knows me better than I know myself anyway. No games, no baggage, no excuses, no masks. Just me, naked on the stage before him like a 300-year-old cello that cannot speak for itself but can only respond by vibrating to the working of the master’s hand.