Sunday, January 15, 2012

January 15 – "I Need a Little Relaxation!"

Before we “tweak” a centuries-old Horarium to suit our 21st century lives, let's get rid of the pitfalls. While not many of us can give the hours to study and worship and prayer that are available to the professed nun, not many of us give the time we could give to study and worship and prayer. Cor Unum is that place where we discover, as King David so succinctly put it: “The nearness of God is my good.” If that is true, and the monastic believes it so to be, then we must find time to find God in the thread of daily living. We mustn’t forsake the good that is ours in Him.

If we will guard against these deceptions, we might begin to see where we can maintain our own Horarium, and if we do not spend quite the length of hours, we will learn how to spend unbroken fellowship with our Lord. Our devotion, as we said at the beginning, will always be that of walking with God on the earth and of drawing near to the Throne of Grace in heaven. One is sustained by the other; one makes the other a living reality.

These are the lies we must confront. See how common they are to us all:

“I will . . . just a little later.”

“I need a little relaxation.”

“I am always so busy.”

We could all deflate those arguments on behalf of another, but seldom do we do so for ourselves. Later rarely ever comes . . . especially when we are accustomed to putting God second.

There is no place on earth, no place in the universe, in all thought or imagination, more relaxing that the actual Presence of God.

There are those on earth to whom we would never say, “I am too busy at the moment.” The nurse does not say that to her superior; the soldier does not say it to an officer; a mother would never say those words to a certain cry of need from her beloved child.

A darling fiancé would not use those words, and would find a way to find time; there are certain clients for whom the business man always makes time.

Gaze, consider, contemplate, imitate . . . these make up the template of devotion among Poor Clare sisters and Franciscans. It is a practice that requires an investment of time, but only of the time we have. We will give it more attention, for it is in looking unto God that we are changed into His likeness, and we have the time to become a healthy, holy people.

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