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Sunday, June 7, 2009
My end of day musings...
Trinity Sunday - today in New Jersey, the sun was shining - warm - a peaceful day. I decided to take an afternoon hike with my dog Shelby on the Mills Reservation. Mills is a 157 acre wooded oasis, situated atop the Watchung Mountain Range, surrounded by suburbia. Hard to imagine this thick forest only 20 minutes from New York City. We drive in to the small gravel covered parking area, Shelby jumps out of the van, I give her a drink of water - and off we go. As we start our way up the trail, quiet takes over. The soft wind rustles the leaves, I hear the call of the Blue Jay high in the canopy, to the left and right of my feet critters (chipmunks?) are shooting under and over fallen logs, moving through the low brush. We are moving into great silence, like a monastery - a place where one goes to pray - to separate oneself, and discover oneself. Blessed Mother Teresa said "In the silence of the heart, God speaks."
In high school, one of the required books for literature was Henry David Thoreau's "Walden." I loved the book, still do. It is a great story - Thoreau leaves the world, he builds a small cabin near a pond, creates a small farm to sustain himself. I still have the book, it is really used - I brought it with me on many camping trips. In Walden, Thoreau wrote, "I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived".
Life is discovery. In the Christian life it is discovering who we are, who is God calling us to be. Where is our place in the Body of Christ? Contemplation, meditation, discernment - all these you will find by taking quiet walks in the woods.
C'mon Shelby, time to go home....