A rare treat occurred this morning after my kids and hubby headed out the door, I was able to catch the last 15 minutes of a morning news show! The interview I saw was about an art teacher who retired and decided to hike the entire length of the Appalachian Trail. It took him 6 months to do it, and he hiked the entire length by himself.
Little does this man know that the words he spoke this morning will always stick with me,
“Ordinary things teach us important lessons. In the silence, I was able to notice them and hear them.”
His words hold incredible insight. Taking the time to slow down, taking the time to be silent, awakens within us the ability to see with new eyes. The lesson this art teacher/hiker/philosopher teaches us is no different than the words we hear in the Psalms, “Be Still and Know that I am God.”
Do we need stillness and silence in our life?
Are we taking the time to notice the ordinary things that God has placed in front of us to reveal Himself to us?
How can we savor the stillness and silence that teaches us about God?
Becky is an Ignatian-trained spiritual director, retreat facilitator, and writer. She is the author of the Busy Lives and Restless Souls (March 2017, Loyola Press) and The Inner Chapel (April 2020, Loyola Press). She helps others create space to connect faith and everyday life through facilitating retreats and days of reflection, through writing, and through spiritual direction.
With nearly twenty years of ministry experience within the Catholic Church, Becky seeks to help others discover God at work in the every day moments of people’s lives by utilizing St. Ignatius’ Spiritual Exercises and the many gifts that our Catholic faith and Ignatian Spirituality provide.
Two years ago I walked over 1500km in France and Spain to Santiago. It was a time of simplicity, with the daily rhythm of walking, carrying as little gear as possible. The clamour of voices inside were eventually stilled, and the details like snails along the trail became very important!
1500km! That is amazing. How long did that take you?
What an incredible experience that must have been.
I can’t do without the silence and the walks!! Even if it’s just a walk round the block after the kids are settled, it’s sacred time.
Becky, I started mid-April and finished early July, so walked across different landscapes and seasons, and it took just over two and a half months. (Some people walk faster and further and would take more like two months, but I wasn’t in a hurry!)