I know winter is (supposed to be?) a time of dormancy and hunkering down to quiet evenings around a fire, a good book and hot cocoa, etc., but at my house it’s been full speed ahead! There has been very little space.

There are several reasons for this, but part of my spacial challenge is due to a job which I recently acquired. My title is “infant hearing screener.” I get to be present (for a short moment in time) to a very sacred space of new life; it feels very holy.

But, boy howdy, sometimes trying to get these little peanuts to settle down and quiet their bodies (and hungers!) in order to complete a 3-minute test presents quite a challenge. But a tight swaddle, a close hug and some gentle persuasion usually gets these little bundles to relax and submit. And so it is with me.

As I was wrestling with a 12-hour old baby recently, I got swaddled. God cupped my face in His hands and reminded me of how squirmy I’ve been lately. God asked me if I could just settle down and quiet my body and my mind for a bit. I was stunned as I listened to this inner conversation taking place between soul and Spirit.

The thing I am noticing about me is that the less time I spend in silence before the One Mystery, the more my mind and its running commentaries distort my reality and my perceptions. Let me be clear …… Contemplation is work! This is not a quick-fix, change-me-overnight kind of practice. But it is the most worthwhile practice I’ve experienced ~ a practice I continually am drawn to as the gentle Hand of Love woos me into a filter-less time of Presence, sitting with Peace.

This scripture resonated with me today in regard to contemplation: “Don’t look for shortcuts to God. The market is flooded with surefire, easy-going formulas for a successful life that can be practiced in your spare time. Don’t fall for that stuff, even though crowds of people do. The way to life – to God! – is vigorous and requires total attention.” Matthew 7:13-14 (The Message)

My prayer is that my soul would exist in a quiet state and my body find stillness so that I can hear and know God, accept the paradox of contradictions with trust, and live in the true Mystery of radical love……swaddled by God.

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