To find true freedom and meaning along the outbound road of life, a deeper journey inward must be made. St. Augustine said, “How can you draw close to God when you are far from your own self?” He prayed: “Grant, Lord, that I may know myself that I may know thee.”
John Calvin wrote: “Our wisdom…consists almost entirely of two parts: the knowledge of God and of ourselves.”
Although this inward journey is rich with reward, it is a difficult path and often disrupted by the distractions of our busy culture. We need rhythms, invitations, and friends who draw us out of our chaos to quiet still waters, who not only lead us on paths of peace, but lead us to the peacemaker. Spiritual guidance, council, or direction, silent/contemplative retreats, and the arts provide moments of grace for God’s Spirit to work. We need times to catch our breath, to reflect, and to rest in the loving arms of our creator. We need this not only for the nourishment of our own souls, but also for the ability to care of others in a healthy way, to love out of an experience of deep love, and to join God’s work of redemption in the world.