Take a Contemplative Walk

Benedictine Sister walks on St. Mary Monastery grounds in Rock Island, Ill.

I am in Southern Indiana for a directed retreat. The gorgeous fall weather helps enrich this already-rich environment of prayer and people. I cherish my time here for many reasons, but most especially because God is always good to my prayer life here!

One of the best parts of retreat is the opportunity for a refreshing contemplative walk. Like anyone, my life can become over-filled with the to do’s, expectations and stuff I think is important. When that happens I lose the quiet walk of contemplation…or at least it becomes noisier!

A contemplative walk is when your life and God are more in sync and, in essence, flowing well together. It is like a lake where the gentle roll of waves is almost rhythmic. It is like a comforting gentle breeze moving through and around you. There is a freedom in the rhythm that moves one to deeper listening.

Some spiritual leaders refer to this state as a contemplative stance.  My own term is contemplative walk because, for me, it is a movement with God.

This contemplative walk is essential to discernment. We have to set aside some of the stuff that over-fills our lives, and allow God into our thoughts and time. Give yourself the space you need for God to fully enter into your life. If your discernment is pushing at you, find the time to make a retreat, and slow down to ponder and pray better. Make space within you for a contemplative walk with God.

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