By: Sarah Morrell
Luke 1:68-79, Philippians 1:3-11
Reflection—v. 79, ‘into the way of peace’
I spent a lovely October weekend on a silent retreat where I read, wrote, prayed, and listened to pounding rain on a tin roof across the street. It astounded me that the sound of birds, rustling leaves, and critters all around had been blocked by city noises, screen distractions, and my inability to make space for peace and solitude. I was reminded of times at Mercy during recovery Bible study, when Pastor Maggie would list our addictions to alcohol, drugs, war, unhealthy relationships, and even isolation. In the midst of grief and loss, I have been sitting in my isolation and darkness and have often felt alone. I have been numbing myself with screen time and resisting vulnerability. I realized on the retreat, however, that God had been with me all along through the beauty of sabbath, of slowing down, of ‘feeling the feels,’ and being in community. I had fortified my walls to block others from opening up about my pain, including God. God reminded me how we are never on this journey of life alone, and that we are called to walk with our family in Christ and guide each other ‘into the way of peace.’ May we shine the shared grace of God on one another and sit in solidarity with those, like me, who need reminders that we are not alone and are beloved children of our Creator.
Prayer: Loving Comforter, please open our hearts and minds to experience your great love, grace, and healing in suffocating isolation.