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Archive for October 28th, 2018

Retreat

retreat copySometimes what I write is because I so desire to share what I am learning. Sometimes what I write is my attempt to put a positive spin on something that is negative, or to speak of joy in the mourning, in the pain, in the bad news or the discouraging. Much of the time what I write is because I know that if I have heard, seen, felt or experienced something, others have too.

But, my main purpose in writing is always to leave something for my kids … so that when I am gone, they have my words to remind them who they are, how loved they are, and who loves them more than their mom ever could.

I also want to teach them that there is not perfect formula for finding balance in life. For life is lived in a sin-filled world, alongside individuals who have the freedom to make their own decisions. Sometimes we need to persevere, sometimes we need to retreat.

Jesus knew what it was to retreat. He knew that his human body and mind needed to get away alone to refresh, to rebuild, to rest and to reconnect with his Father. Even when (especially when) the demands for his message were greatest, he slipped away from those who needed him for awhile.

There is the story of Jesus healing a man with leprosy. As one can imagine, when word got out that someone had been healed of that horrible, disfiguring illness, people came in droves looking for Jesus. Luke (5:16) tells us thatJesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.”

Then, after Jesus heard of the death of John the Baptist, “he withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place.” (Matthew 14:13)

Just hours before he approached his disciples, while walking on the water, Jesus “went up on a mountainside by himself to pray” (Mark 14:23).

And, of course, before his arrest, he had gone to the Garden of Gethsemane to pray.

When Jesus retreated from the crowds he wasn’t heading off to an adventure-filled holiday, nor was he picking up his favourite book, having coffee with a friend or catching up on social media. When Jesus retreated, he did so with one purpose in mind, to pray to his Father … seeking guidance, strength and support.

Our world is busy, noisy, demanding. Solitude, the reality of being still and knowing that He is God, is something that takes intentional effort.

May we seek our Father, when we retreat from the world around us, for his guidance, strength and support.

 

 

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