Holy Interruptions

A friend recently asked how I do inner work. I told her I have to both be still and move. Move as in run - to gain perspective and inspiration through my pace. My sitting still often involves journaling or centering prayer and sometimes mindful meditation.

Honestly, sitting still is one of the most difficult disciplines I take on. It’s not really the act of sitting, I mean I do that for much of the day with my clients. It’s the still part that gets me. The quieting my mind to be exact.

Many things distract me from being still and quiet. Mostly, though it’s busyness and numbing. Folding laundry, cleaning up the kitchen, looking at Face Book, a TV show. I am an accomplished busy-er.

The other still and quiet obstacle is my mind. My mind likes to think. My mind likes to be engaged - full-on, flat-out, firing on all cylinders - unless of course, I’m asleep.

I know that becoming still and quiet in body and mind is an action of self-love. And like all acts of self-love it has a divine effect. (And in my case divine intervention from God, but I digress.) Because to show up with love for yourself, you have to see yourself as God sees you. Becoming still and quiet in body and mind is to shine a light on hopes, dreams, and strengths as well as fears, distress and weaknesses.

A couple of Sundays ago I visited a church along with eight 13-year old boys going through confirmation. Just before the sermon - right in the middle of the service - there is a Holy Interruption. The entire congregation gets up and mills about talking, drinking coffee and eating cookies.

Arriving back at our church and debriefing, we asked our boys what they thought about this Holy Interruption. They liked it. And what one of them said really struck me. “I like it because it kind of forces you to get to know people and talk to each other. Not like at our church, where we have the coffee and cookies after the service in the basement and you can choose to go home instead of participate.”

What I’ve noticed happening lately are unexpected and often unexplained gifts of time. Time for me to be still and quiet. Time for me to tune-in, become aware, go inward. I have taken to calling these my holy interruptions.

Time to begin prying myself from busy and distracted and numbing. Time for attention and acknowledgment of the emotional messiness. Time for shifting my perspective. Time to quiet my brain. Time for listening for the clarity in the distance. I’m sure it’s just over the next hill.

Holy interruptions forcing me to slow down, stop, get still and quiet and go inward. I don’t have the luxury of choosing not to participate.

My wish is this week my holy interruptions will open me to creativity, to calm, to breathing deeply.

What might shift for you, if you use the holy interruptions of your life this week? I would love to hear about your holy interruptions.