Friday, June 25, 2010

the retreat - arrival - Jan. 7, 2008

From journal:  Preparing to leave for retreat this afternoon with happy anticipation.  I know fear and desire to sleep/stay in bed are still there, but they're hiding for now....

8:00 p.m. - Was almost teary when I left the boys and was a bit surprised by that - I knew I'd miss them but was also ready for a break....(On the way to Concordia) I got gas in Salina and realized I'd be cutting it closer than I'd planned to arrive in time to settle in before the 5:30 p.m. dinner.  Called Manna House and Sister B. said no problem, just come in when I get there, I'd probably only be 5 minutes late.  Then I glanced over to the passenger seat and realized I still had the bag of eggs, eggshells, and fast-food remnants I'd meant to throw away at the gas station (so they wouldn't stink up at home for a month).  So I pulled over at a rest stop to toss it - I knew I'd forget.  I pictured myself walking into a silent meal at MH, late, shouting, "Sorry I'm late, but I brought eggs!".  Then I tried to decide if it was better to speed and get there on time, with the sisters knowing I'd sped, or interrupt the meal.  I ended up driving 75-79 mph, and got there at  5:35.  So how fast does SB drive?

Of course, things were more laid-back then I expected - gotta' learn to better trust/listen to what I "suspect" - there were only 6 of us total and it was okay to talk during my first meal.  I just wondered - am I the only one who will be eating in silence here?  My place will be at a separate table from now on, and they seemed to find talking natural.  So much to learn.  I am thankful for the sisters' graciousness and kindness.  I have a slight nervousness about being in a new place with new people, but actually I feel more at home here than I ever have in a hotel room....I am glad to be here.

My task (my "word") for the next 24 hours is to relax, rest, and be aware of what is happening around and within me.

Went to get the rest of my stuff out of the car and couldn't get back into MH - kept pulling and pulling on the door, then stopped and looked at the door for a bit and realized I was supposed to push.  Yes, Sister J, I was aware....  I live in a Far Side comic.

Was thinking of how many of my book-buying sessions have had a mystical-ish element to them - buy this book, don't bother with this section, look carefully here, etc.  (It's) God clearly communicating to me and I can tell when I get off-track and want to explore another shelf - no, there's nothing there, come over here, we're done.  Discerning God's voice and my own ideas at these times....

Turn away from the voice that tell you you "shouldn't" do this and tune into the voice that says the way is within me... (not literal voices!)

as with kids with disabilities...I meet them, I enter a bookstore with an open mind and heart, empty of expectations - here's an open space for you to be in with me - I encounter and interact with you (person, bookstore, etc.) from an empty (?), hospitable, loving space - I want to experience you and get to know who you truly are - no masks, no assumptions or expectations - let's just be together - communion, prayer

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