Today is a retreat day for me. I will insert the standard three, one hour periods of prayer and the two one hour periods of spiritual, gentle reading but the rest of the time I plan to unplug, rest, nap and cook. My main project is preparation for an italian dinner of eggplant parmesan and so i plan to make the sauce today – cooked long and slow with these tomatoes and peppers. A first course of artichokes and a final course of scallops in lemon butter on toast will make for a good meal.
Retreat days are a time for recollection and it occurs to me that this basket of veggies is an icon for me of the internal work I need to do. I need to keep an internal basket near me. Int that basket I will place the things which Jesus and I need to have some little chats about and on which input from the Holy Spirit would be most welcome.
I find most people just fill retreat days with reading great spiritual tomes as a way to self-anesthetize the pain and loss and grief which collects on us like burs do when hiking in the woods. Jesus will take this basket and help me sort through what is lovely, what is buried at the bottom and is rotting, what is not yet ripe and what simply does not go into the recipe of my life.