We’re headed into a long weekend to celebrate the Fourth of July. As we look forward to time spent sweating at neighborhood barbecues and late evening fireworks shows, I have found myself wondering if we understand what it means to relax, to take time away, to slow down and not be busy.
This is something that has been on my mind before this weekend as well. In my book The Son Rises I offered a new source of meditation on The Stations of the Cross. This arose out of my discovery of the power of meditating. Our imaginations are quickened and we can allow ourselves literally to journey back to an important time in the past. Unfortunately, learning to do this process well takes time. You have to set apart uninterrupted periods for contemplation. The results, however, are amazing.
This is true for people of faith and those who would consider themselves non-religious. We would do well to learn to take time away from our busy schedules–whether that business is related to our social or professional lives–and slow down enough to contemplate what is really important.
This weekend will turn out to be stressful and hectic for many of us. For some, it will almost be a relief to return to work on Tuesday–at least there we know the routine and the expectations.
But I would encourage you to take some time away this weekend for solitude and contemplation. You will find the time restful as you are given a chance to clear out the chaos that often plagues us in every day life. As a person of faith, you may find new insights in your relationship with God. Not only that, but you might be so surprised by your enjoyment of the discipline that you may even put effort into to pursuing such a practice on a regular basis.
I would thoroughly enjoy hearing about your experiences with this challenge, whether in an email, facebook message or a simple comment on this post. I myself am looking forward to some good family time in Colorado where I will be sure to enjoy a long walk by myself in the crisp mountain air–much more to my liking than the sweltering flat lands!