by Kay Klinkenborg
Grace and glue. Two strange partners. In this harried, frightening, and disordered time, how can I step into grace? There is an element that needs to take place, whether in 3 minutes, 30 minutes, or an hour. It is silence. Stop. Step back. Listen. Absorb. BE SILENT!
Pause, take a personal inventory of what I see, what I am interpreting. This space provides profound breakthroughs. It can alter our responses to intense emotions like fear, anger, grief, etc.; and it can alter our absorption of beauty and awe. Silence. Most of us fear it for where it may take our mind and thoughts. But silence is a spiritual practice.
It requires trust to step into silence; albeit vulnerable. Trust in God and myself. When trust is in place, I can set my petty ego needs aside. I can then discover energy that creates power to use my voice and decide what actions are appropriate for me. Silence will change me.
Am I ready for change? Silence will guide me. The spiritual response is not to be defensive, ready for the argument, the fight. I often envision that something outstanding, breathtaking is to happen to know it was grace. True, but rare. It happens when we pause to absorb grace. If I accept the challenge to bring a spiritual perspective to this committee meeting, to the interaction, to this choice I will come with a listening heart, an attentive ear and gain a new perspective; I will learn not to go in with a reactive state of mind. Richard Rohr in Silent Contemplation: Finding God in Contemplation (pg. 23) reinforces the path of silence and contemplation by noting, “appreciating silence and beauty is the ‘grace glue’ that connects everything with everything else in the universe.” Who knew that grace is glue?