The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
In verdant pastures he gives me repose;
Beside restful waters he leads me;
he refreshes my soul. (Ps 23:1-3a)
The Catholic Church imposes a certain law upon its priests, deacons, sisters, and brothers. Once a year, we must go on retreat.
The reason, quite simply, is to “rest in the Lord”.
We fill our days with so many things that keep us incredibly busy. In the busyness of the day, we can easily lose sight of our spiritual goals. We can even lose sight of our God.
That is why we retreat.
Because, when we retreat, we have a chance to have the Lord refresh our souls. When our souls are refreshed, it is easier to get back on task again. Our rest gives us the energy we need to focus on the demands that await us in our lives.
Advent gives us the opportunity to rest and take stock even as it helps us to focus upon our spiritual goals. We are, after all, preparing ourselves for the coming of the Son of Man. Yes, at Christmas, we celebrate a birthday. However, the second celebration of Christmas is vitally important: preparing for the return of that Christ-Child, now majestic in His heavenly splendor.
If we want to be judged positively by our Lord, we need to be prepared. In order to prepare, we must be able to focus upon our spiritual goals. In order to focus upon our spiritual goals, our souls must be refreshed.
It becomes imperative, then, to make time for God so that He can speak to us even as He heals us and calms our spirit.
FAITH ACTION: Whether it be by reading from the Bible or other spiritual reading, listening to soft, reflective music, or sitting in silence, create a goodly amount of time in your schedule today merely to rest in the Lord.