“Ouch! Dang, that hurts!” I groaned, lying on the sidewalk flat on my back. My head pounded as the icy sidewalk I’d slipped on became a concrete bed. I checked for bleeding or broken bones.
Bailey, my dog, licked my snow-covered face. I slowly got up and limped back home.
“It’s a concussion,” the doctor confirmed after showing me the results of the CT Scan. “You hit the back of your head hard. Give yourself a few days of bed rest, and you’ll be up and running. Be careful on that ice.”
The next morning during my quiet time with God, I dumped my soul out to him.
“Really, God? I don’t have time to rest. I have too much to get done. A Summit and book launch, blogs to write, jobs around the house, all clamoring for attention. Loved ones who need me to be there for them.” After I ended my Irish fist-shaking, I closed my eyes, grew silent, and asked the Creator:
“What are you trying to teach me?”
“I am teaching you to slow down. Relax. Have compassion for yourself. Patience. Can you stop trying to save the universe and just have fun in this season of life? I’ve got this. I’ve got the whole world in my hands. Can you let me love you?”
I sighed with relief. “You’re right, God. I need to slow down. Patience has been a life-long struggle for me. Thank you it wasn’t worse. At least I didn’t land in the hospital. Please give me the grace to let go of my anger towards myself and be compassionate and patient. Help me take care of myself and just enjoy this season of life. Help me let you love me.”
Quiet Time to the Rescue
These daily quiet times with God over the past thirty years have become a refuge, a dwelling place for me and my heart. Quiet time rescues me from the noise in my head and the chaos of the world.
Morning solitude with God started when Casey, a retreat leader, suggested years ago that I spend twenty minutes each morning in meditation or contemplation.
“Take time each day to reconnect with your Inner Self and God,” Casey told me. “It will transform your life.”
Casey was right. The late Father Thomas Keating, who brought the gift of Centering Prayer to the western world, said the return to the ancient practices of meditation and contemplation in our current age is the work of the Holy Spirit—a sign of hope—an invitation to leave the noise and chaos of our busy lives and experience inner peace.
Science and Spirituality Agree
Science confirms quiet time is not only good for the soul, but also vital for the mind and body.
- substance abuse
- pain management
Through extensive research, the HeartMath Institute has documented that meditation leads to heart-based living, a lifestyle where heart, mind, body, and spirit are in coherence. They work together to bring about lower blood pressure, deeper clarity, wisdom, and intuition to help us maneuver life’s ups and downs.
According to one of my spiritual direction clients, the benefits of spiritual meditation are deep and expansive. She says,
“I think the greatest benefit of spiritual meditation is the pure sense of bliss and confidence in who you are. By entering silence each day, I gain insights from the Creator, who embraces me with unconditional love and leads me to the answers regarding my many questions and problems. It’s like having a Divine Coach guiding me each step of the way through life.”
There isn’t a cookie-cutter approach to daily meditation since our experience of God is as unique as our fingerprints. Perhaps the most important step we can take is to follow Casey’s advice and begin a daily practice in a way that’s life-giving. Set aside twenty minutes each day to be alone with God. Discover the practice that is life-giving for you.
Some Resources for Your Spiritual Toolbox
We’ll talk about different styles of meditation in the free, upcoming Finding Flow Webinar—How to Start or Jumpstart Your Meditation Practice so you can discover a smorgasbord of practices and pick the one that’s just right for you.
The Finding Flow Summit—Spiritual Practices to Reclaim Inner Peace, Balance, and Wholeness will offer twenty spiritual leaders who’ll discuss how they experience the Presence of God in their lives.
You can also pick up a copy of Finding Flow, my latest book, to learn more about how the ancient practices of quiet time, spiritual reading, community, and discovering your spiritual gifts are a pathway to inner peace. If you pre-order it before March 1, you can save $4.00. Here’s the link to pre-order: Finding Flow—Spiritual Practices to Reclaim Inner Peace, Balance, and Wholeness
Set Your Spirit Free
When we share our experiences of God, we discover the unique ways in which the Creator communicates with us. We affirm the Spirit is alive and well and moving in our lives. We find new language and metaphors that help us hear God’s wisdom and guidance. We set our Spirits free to live the life God desires for us—the life we can only imagine.
It’s true! Quiet Time solves everything.
Consider giving yourself that gift every day.
—brian j plachta