In the 5th grade, my short-cut on the walk home from school took me through a cemetery. It was usually devoid of other people, especially peers, so, provided a tranquil place for daily reflection. I often sat beneath the same large tree: listening to the world around me, feeling the tree’s bark at my back, sinking into the ground beneath me, breathing.
I had no words to define why or what I was doing, but thus began my contemplative journey.
Contemplative practices have begun and ended and been understood and experienced differently in different stages of my life. But when I stumbled into a Contemplative Prayer Small Group and Retreat Leadership program (completely by mistake!), I gained some language and knowledge around my experiences with God, and perceived a growing need (for myself, others and our world) to share this knowledge and experience with others.
From those elementary school days in the cemetery, through late-night theological reflections during high school; college dance and choir experiences and post-secondary global travels; all the way through the academic rigors of seminary (twice) and mid-career Contemplative Prayer and Mindfulness studies: sinking into the Ground of All Being has sustained me.
I join Melissa in hoping that these practices feed your soul and nurture the life of your family with Divine goodness and grace.