by Ellen Aldridge, former Kaio Community Member
A wood-burning stove, cozy blankets, snow that is actually white instead of greyish-brown, and my favorite thing in the world: SILENCE. This was the experience I was blessed with last year as the Kaio Community went on retreat at Plow Creek. I love the city—the activities, the diversity, being able to walk to the grocery store—but being in the country refreshes my soul.
I was once talking to Timothy as he was whipping up some hot soup to offset the frigid weather. He’s been to Plow Creek a few times over the years. When I asked him what his favorite part of those visits was, he said, “I love the quiet and the lack of distractions there.”
Wow, I thought, this lifelong city-dweller and I have that in common.
Something important happens when we are able to quiet the distractions in our lives: we make room for God to show himself.
There is a spiritual exercise that really exemplifies that for me. You find a peaceful place, spend a few minutes quieting your thoughts, then slowly read this well-known Bible verse, removing a word with each repetition until you are left with the most simple (and also most difficult) way to hear God:
Be still and know that I am God.
Be still and know that I am.
Be still and know.
During this Lenten season, please consider, along with me, ways in which you can remove distractions to focus on your relationship with God and how much he loves you. Be still and know. Be.