1.21.2011

solitude

i love new beginnings. january. even the new school year. a chance to start over, unfettered by whatever happened before. even this year, although it feels a bit like i'm beginning a bit late, there are some pleasures that only a new year can afford.

pleasures like beginning a new book {or two} of daily readings. i know that even in May someone could pick up a book of daily readings, devotional or otherwise, but there is something that irks me deep inside at the thought of starting a book in the middle, that just keeps me from doing so.

so, this week, i am getting caught up on the daily readings that i missed while i was away from the three {yes, three} books of daily meditations that will be part of my journey this year. you might ask, 'why three?', and the only answer i have for you is 'why not three?' :-)

in truth, these are three that i have wanted to read for a while, and since i am in the perfect january window, and choosing between Rilke, Buechner and Nouwen seems pretty much impossible, here we are. {you can find out all three here.}

today's reading from Henri Nouwen's book, Bread For The Journey, is definitely one that i needed to hear. living alone, on the other side of the country from my family, i have grown accustomed to the benefits of solitude. however, after 25 days of living at my parents, and being surrounded by family, since returning home, my heart has been fighting the aloneness. this is what Mr. Nouwen writes on day 21...
Solitude is the garden for our hearts, which yearn for love. It is the place where our aloneness can bear fruit. it is the home for our restless bodies and anxious minds. Solitude, whether it is connected with a physical space or not, is essential for our spiritual lives. It is not an essay place to be, since we are so insecure and fearful that we are easily distracted by whatever promises immediate satisfaction. Solitude is not immediately satisfying, because in solitude we meet our demons, our addictions, our feelings of lust and anger, and our immense need for recognition and approval. But if we do not run away, we will meet there also the One who said, "Do not be afraid. I am with you, and i will guide you throughout the valley of darkness."

Let's keep returning to our solitude.
so, this is my goal right now. to once again grown comfortable with and embrace the solitude.

1 comments:

bellaverita said...

I like this, Suzi. Only God can meet us in our solitude and bring good out of what seems to be emptiness. God really is good. Thanks for this.

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