I’ve been hosting a communal-contemplative group. The whole premise is to be silent together for 20 minutes, try to focus on what God might be saying to us as a group or individual, take 10 more minutes of silence to journal thoughts, and then if you feel up to it, share with the group something you’ve heard from God.
One reason we do it communally is because being silent by one’s self is often hard to do in the context we are in. There often is simply too much noise around us to stay focussed for 20 minutes. When there are other people around there is some accountability to the silence.
During the first 10 minutes of the silence, I was feeling kind of blah about anything I may have been hearing from God. I was fidgety, worried about things like my stomach growling and being embarrassed in the group, and finding it difficult to centre my thoughts.
I prayed to God that She might speak to me.
Then I heard the birds singing. That was followed by an image of our tree in the front of our house; it is blooming with leaves and branches popping out everywhere. Then my mind started to be filled with so much beauty all around me. Grass growing, tulips blooming, children laughing, blue skies, the faces of those I love…
I truly believe God was telling me that sometimes the obvious is right in the front of my eyes. Seeing and feeling and hearing God‘s presence is as simple as paying attention to the beauty of creation all around me.
When everyone left, my stomach growled.
I ate supper, with much appreciation, the wonderful meal before me.
And I felt God’s presence.
And I was thankful.