When You're At Loose Ends

Towards the end of my retreat, I started feeling antsy, at loose ends, that perhaps I had done all I could do for this retreat and I still had two nights left.

Of course, I was wrong.

I picked up a couple of books and started reading them and put them back down again. I picked up a "Henri Nouwen Reader" (not the correct title) and within pages came across this quote:
"When we are not afraid to enter into our own center and to concentrate on the stirrings of our own soul, we come to  know that being alive means being loved. this experience tells us that we can love only because we are born out of love, that we can give only because our life is a gift, and that we can make others free only because we are set free by God whose heart is greater than ours." - (Henri Nouwen, The Wounded Healer)
I read that and realized my loose ends meant I was dodging the gift of acknowledging the presence of God, of sitting with Jesus, like I would with a loved one, close together. I spent some time imagining this.

It was a powerful image, a powerful longing. I asked God that I remember this in everything and in every time. Not just at prayer but almost with every footstep that I take, a new (to me) kind of unceasing prayer.

Now, a few weeks later, after a day of rest, and I realize that I already had forgotten this: that I just have to remember to sit with God. With words or without words, as God knows my innermost self.

Someone remind me of this again sometime?


  1. Henri Nouwen is the best! I have a pamphlet of collected devotions for each day in Lent that is phenomenal: I'll look for it to get the title.


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