Earlier this year I spend a long weekend at the Trappist monastery, Gethsemane, and reveled in the solitude and intentional openness to God’s spirit I experienced there. How wonderful it was to leave my “real life” behind for those few days, or did I?
It is said that when Thomas Merton was novice master at the Abby of Gethsemane he told the men in his care, “before you can have a spiritual life, you’ve got to have a life.”
Parker Palmer notes that Merton’s point is that we find our spiritual lives in the god-awful mess of our lives; “in its earthy realities, unpredictable challenges, surprising resources, creative dynamics.” I relish his idea of the “wideness and wildness of God.”
She who seeks her life shall lose it, and she who loses her life…shall find it.
Lose, let go, hold loosely. Life happens; pay attention in gratitude.