Wellspring Community

Retreat 7

Keeping Faith Alive (18)

BE STILL AND KNOW THAT I AM GOD.

Be in your prayer space, follow the usual steps and settle into silence.

Sit still…..Relax…….Do not rush………

Take a couple of gentle, slow and deep breaths…becoming aware of your breath going in and out… stay focused on this breath of life……

Now from the depth of your heart begin to wish your mind well……….

Take a moment. Bless your day. Let your day Bless you……Take another moment. Bless your world. Let your world bless you……

Every day that we wake up is a good day. Every breath that we take is filled with hope for a better day. Every word that we speak is a chance to change what is bad into something good…….Now from the depth of heart, wish your mind well……

Now I invite you to consecrate this day and all that come with this day….in your own way, in humble, simple, may be even inadequate words………..

I pray for you and I invite you to pray for each other and for all, who, at this moment, are receiving the gift of this new day!

We continue our meditation on keeping our faith alive. We meditated on prayer and prayerfulness as essential to keeping our faith alive. Our last meditation was on Prayerfulness as a desire and an act of self-surrender, as an ongoing practice of daily surrender to His will in all aspects of our life.

The mainspring and the core of the life of Jesus was one of continuous self-surrender. His life of obedience has taught us that the only way to peace is to do the will of God. There can be no peace when our will is at variance with the will of God; that the only way to fullness of Joy is to do the will of God. There can be no joy when our will is not aligned with the will of God.

Surrender to God is a choice we must make with every breath we take

and that is the way to keep our faith alive.

Choosing to surrender to God demands that we become attentive to what is going on inside of us, about us and around us. To be attentive is to be alert, awake, docile and sensitive. Often we catch ourselves being inattentive, insensitive, irrational and even making unwise choices. Being attentive to the deepest desires of our hearts enables us to bring our wills into harmony with the will of God. This meditation is on being attentive as essential to keeping our faith alive.

Take a few moments….Be still! Stay focused and Be attentive!

Take a few deep breaths right now…slow and gentle!

Breathe in God’s Way and breathe out my way – God’s way in, My way out.

You may not be happy about it right now, but in the bigger picture of life, you’ll be glad you chose to surrender to God and kept your faith alive!

Pay attention! You may have heard this from your parents or from your teachers. Maybe you’ve heard that from the policeman who just pulled you over. Maybe you are half-asleep during the sermon. Maybe you are thinking about something else when someone is trying to share important things about his/her life.

Maybe you are just going through the motions and have missed the moments of grace that God has put in front of you because you were not paying attention.

We are a people who have been gifted and sensitized by the Holy Spirit. We should be aware of what’s going on within us and around us. We are often so preoccupied with pursuing our own self-righteousness that we don’t know what’s going on around us or within us.

Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God……. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things (Colossians 3:1-2 ). To “set heart or mind” means pay attention…be attentive, be vigilant!

Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered (Mathew 10:29-31). Our heavenly Father is attentive to our needs…..His vigilance is constant!

Pay attention to your desires.  We have all kinds of desires.  Pay attention to those desires that need to be purified or abandoned. Bring your desires into harmony with the will of God!

Pay attention to those wonderful desires that are there but have not been acted upon and begin to respond to those desires. Bring your desires into harmony with the will of God!

Pay attention….be vigilant to the concerns and needs of those entrusted to your care.

It takes attentiveness, vigilance to teach sound doctrine, healthy values and morals; develop noble friendships and relationships…..

It takes Vigilance to enable others to discover and correct their mistakes……to help others watch their lives and their conduct. Our families, communities and churches are healthy when we are vigilant, when we are attentive to one another’s concerns and needs.

Attentiveness is a healthy disposition which nurtures a culture of meaningful relationship, genuine caring for one another that includes a certain openness of life between members in families and communities, where members discipline, instruct, serve, forgive, show compassion, mourn and rejoice with one another.

Be attentive to what is important and what is trivial, what needs action now and what is not really all that urgent. Be attentive to whatever is going on beneath the surface. There is always something beyond what seems urgent.

Be attentive to moments of grace that God puts in front of us.

There is a story about a man on a horse galloping swiftly along the road. An old farmer standing in the fields, seeing him pass by, called out, “Hey rider, where are you going?”. The rider turned around and shouted back, “Don’t ask me, ask my horse!”

This is the condition of many. They have lost control over the great powers that pull them forward toward an unknown direction. They have become passive victims of an ongoing movement which they do not understand.

Where are you going? Where’s your life going? Have you stopped to think about it recently?

Pay attention! The light may be ready to turn green! You better pay attention!

Notice the “moments of grace” in your life. These moments are not just something that happens to you…they are what you can offer someone else. The times that you can be there for someone, listen to someone, compliment someone, help someone…. serve someone. Those are the moments in your life worth paying attention to….they are moments of Grace and now is the moment of grace.

It takes real discipline to “attend to” – take note of – ordinary things. For most of us, it takes deliberate effort to be attentive. Major happenings like birth, moving, promotion, financial loss, death, etc. force themselves on our consciousness. The ordinary realities of life simply pass by; they just go by or we just go by them. Morning comes and evening comes, one day passes.

Be attentive…be Vigilant…Be present to the moment!

Now is the moment of Grace!

Let us strive to be true to ourselves, to be authentic in all we say and do, to be steadfast in living our faith and keep our faith alive. May the “Year of Faith” be God’s wonderful gift to you and I pray that you will make it a gracious and joyful gift to others.

 Keep your faith alive and your faith will keep you alive!

Fr. Gus Tharappel, msfs