A Way Without Words, divine, focus, forced union, grace, improve, interior silence, Marsha Sinetar, regular life, spiritual life, St. Augustine, The Sophia Center for Spirituality
Every time there is a holiday or some out-of-the-ordinary event, I find myself taking a deep breath at its conclusion and feel as if new vistas are opening to which attention ought to be given. It’s not as radical as it seems – as in “Whew! That’s over! Now what?” – but rather as if there was something holding the calendar back until it was completed and now “regular life” is resuming for awhile. I felt that way this morning as I moved from the sound of Fourth of July fireworks while drifting off to sleep last night to the familiar sounds of birdsong awakening me and bringing the plan for the day into focus.
I’m not sure that this next is a seamless “fit” with the above paragraph but I read something this morning that was a reminder to be about growth in the spiritual life, specifically about how it is or is not “achieved.” It caught my attention and I felt it wanting to be shared.
As we progress, we realize that forced union with the divine is impossible and that we will not reach enlightenment by checking off a lengthy “to do” list. We do not scrub, wash and launder our way into God’s presence in order to merit transformation. We are hindered by too much concern to “improve,” or to have this or that experience…
As we become receptive to our own interior silence and to the nuances and gifts of grace, we sense that growth into God is inevitable and that this union has always existed. St. Augustine, speaking to God, said, “You were with me, and I was not with you.” Nor would we desire [God] if we were not wanted first. (A Way Without Words by Marsha Sinetar, p. 65)