Retreat!

Sometimes you need to unplug.  Sometimes you need to get away.  Sometimes you need to withdraw, change-it-up, get out-of-town.  Here are a few highlights of my recent journey to parts elsewhere…

Enjoying milkshakes with Grandparents.

Starting a snow ball fight at a rest stop.

Pulling off to pose for pictures at mountains and canyons.

Sampling Alien Jerky.

Cruising the Las Vegas strip.

Touring Hoover Dam and a bridge that is very, very high.

Lining up for parades and roller-coasters and churros at Disney and California Adventure.

Shopping at the Old Town General Store.

Lounging on a Pacific Ocean beach.

Petting rays, holding sea stars, watching dolphins and orcas and penguins at Sea World.

Walking in a Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot.

Eating the juiciest turkey ever with some of the people I love the most.

Playing games and watching movies with family.

Criss-crossing ten different states on the journey there and back again.

Yes, we need to withdraw from time-to-time.  It doesn’t have to be a trip of 3,600+ miles, but it does need to be far enough and long enough to allow some recharging and reflection.  Clear the head.  Restore the spirit.  Reboot the server.

I like the simplicity of how Luke’s Gospel records Jesus’  example.

“But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.” (Luke 5:16)

Withdraw to a “lonely place”.  A place where you can center yourself.  A place where you can focus.

For Jesus, the point of withdrawal was to pray.  Putting himself in a space where he could commune with God.  Not an escape from “work” or “duty” or “responsibility”, but a withdrawal – a retreat – to create the room needed to listen for and experience God in an intimate and personal way.  To receive the fuel needed for work and duty and responsibility.

I was able to do that on this vacation.  It was long overdue and much-needed.  I pray I will not wait so long to withdraw to a “lonely” place.  I pray you won’t either.

Life is better together,

Shawn

3 responses to “Retreat!

  1. Pingback: Confession of a Fantasy-Junkie | Big Rubber Band Ball·

  2. Pingback: Alone (Lent #37) | Big Rubber Band Ball·

  3. Pingback: Alone (Lent #38) | Big Rubber Band Ball·

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