There were a few "firsts" for Lilia this week, too. Sarah took her to Adventureland, where she rode her first rollercoaster, The Tornado, and her first ferris wheel. She also (evidently) visited her first cemetery. We have a friend, Missy McKinley, who died several years ago, and her grave is near our new neighborhood. I invited Sarah to stop, and when we pulled into the cemetery, Lilia wanted to know what all those stone things were. We explained, and she said it made her feel a little sad. Yes. She then wanted to walk around a portion of it alone, away from us. She seemed to be reflecting on it all. We let her be for a few minutes.
Lilia also watched "The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe" as her "job" some of the time Sarah and I were working. She didn't know the story, and I felt excited for her, getting to see and hear it for the first time. She didn't like the war part. And wanted to take it home.
They also did some grocery shopping, and brought me flowers! They're a bright spot in a room full of boxed up belongings
Jack left on Wednesday for a golf tournament in his home town (Sparta, Wisconsin) and the girls were here till around two yesterday. Since their departure, I'm still getting a lot done, but decided that today needed to be a bit of a retreat day. ( I noticed that when I get going, it's hard to make myself stop. So I decided to rest today, and be here. Alone)
So I've shifted gears and done some reading--Anthony de Mello's Seek God Everywhere: Reflections on the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius. This is one of the four books I haven't packed somewhere. I left it out because our A.W.E. group reads a chapter each month. I left it out because I haven't seen my copy since March, and found it on a shelf with my journals. I think I was trying to lose it, because I didn't like the first three or four chapters, but THIS ONE. . .
You know how things sometimes find you when you need them?
So, here are a few things from the book:
The discernment of spirits pilots within our heart a kind of ebb and flow of movements through which we can find the will of God. It is here that the whole spiritual life is lived. If we are not in touch with all this, then we are living at a very superficial level in our mind and will.
Discernment is learned in the depth of one's heart, in silence, in long exposure to prayer and to the Bible and in suffering. Only by sharing God's mentality and Christ's mentality do we develop an instinct for what is right and wrong, where the Spirit is speaking and where not. Like a taste for music, good painting, and wine, we develop an instinct for discernment. We learn discernment through probing the depths of our hearts.
When we are led by "the spirit," it will frequently break the rules of our "mind." Outstanding people sooner or later go against human prudence. They take prudence into consideration, but then their instinct moves them. It is essential to get in touch with and discern our spiritual instinct.
"The God of nature is not different from the God of supernature. God is one and works through all."
"There is a difference between real personal fulfillment and merely satisfying oneself." and "The human situation is not quite as human as we think; it is also divine. The human is divine; God is in the human! Explore that!"
And the idea that I need to think more about is: "One principle is that whatever causes sadness comes from the devil, not from God. So when we pick up sadness we might say that this could not be from God." I'll just ponder that as I finish up packing.
Oh, and I must mention. . .right here in our little suburban neighborhood this morning, I saw three hawks chasing down a squirrel. I interrupted them on my walk, and I think the squirrel got away. This time. It gave me pause. Hawks = precision, stealth, beauty. I felt lucky to witness that.