The Women’s Fellowship is another Emmanuel Connection Group that has been reading Sacred Pauses: Spiritual Practices for Personal Renewal. Unlike the book study group that started with chapter 1 and continued through the book in order, these women began with the chapters they were most drawn to. So far three different women have led sessions on Getting Outside, Confessing, and Living Simply.
“I chose the outdoors chapter because I always felt distracted outside, as if I shouldn’t be looking around so much,” said one leader. “But in reading this chapter, I see that can also be part of prayer.”
“I really resonated with the chapter on living simply, because I try to live that way too,” said another.
“Our need to confess and repent is important,” said the third, “not just the small issues, but the serious deep things.”
Some of the women could name everyday icons that reminded them to pause:
- a plaque received as a wedding gift with the words “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord”
- a crocheted piece that says “Der Herr ist mein Hirte” (The Lord is my shepherd)
- angels sitting in different places around the house.
For others, it wasn’t so much an object as their surroundings:
- my downstairs room where it’s quiet
- being outside, walking or taking long hikes–it’s so majestic that I need to be quiet and think
- seeing nature–the other day there was a bird on a branch with water drops everywhere, and when the bird dipped its head to take a drink, it almost looked like it was saying thank you.
I love the summary that one woman gave: “The main thing about Sacred Pauses is sensing God’s presence all the time; it isn’t always a prayer but God is always there.”
Writing/Reflection Prompt: What object in your home reminds you of God’s presence?
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