Saturday, February 10, 2007

A Quiet Time, with Tools

What a marvelous day.... I went to Mass this morning at Visitation Convent, had coffee with a priest friend, then came home and read, prayed quietly and put up the last three of nine outdoor lights on our house (a bone chilling 10 degrees out.... but warmer than it has been or shall be soon here in MN) I also had the chance to sit by the fire and read and just think.... a luxury indulged in all too infrequently.

I am striving to finish up Meg Funk's book Tools Matter... for Practicing the Spiritual Life. The entire book has deepened my hunger for alone time with God. She has a fine sense about her writing, not really a "how to" manual, but very practical, and steeped in Benedictine/ Monastic/ Spiritual Practice Wisdom.

Here is a little slice which I hope will encourage you to pick it up and read more.....
"How can we tend the garden of our souls? Are there any tools? How do
these tools work? This book is a brief presentation of tools foundin the
Christian tradition and how they worked for the early monks and nuns.
These monastics were people like you and me, They felt the same
impulse we do-- they needed help.

To find that help they went to visit the early hermits, quiet dwellers in the
desert, and asked them, " and asked them "How do you do it?"
"How do I do it?"

These wise persons taught them to guard their hearts, to watch
their thoughts, to spend time in vigils, to fast, to confess, to practice
ceaseless prayer, to practice prayer of the heart, and to do manual labor,
to name a few of the recommended practices."

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