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Work of Silence

Work of Silence

February 26, 2023

Last week seems a bit unreal, or maybe surreal is better said. The extended mid-winter break due to the ice storm was a different kind of surprise, to be sure. We hope that those of you who lost power (and perhaps suffered property damage), and those of you still without power, are gaining back some “normal” in your lives.
 
Though we didn’t begin our Lenten journey together last week, we are nonetheless, together on the 40-day journey to Easter, the greatest celebration in the Catholic church. Sunday’s Gospel gave an interesting twist on the inconvenience or lack of phone and internet some of us experienced last week, the work of silence. Part of the reflection on the Gospel I heard was about limiting the use of electronic devices during Lent. But without those devices, how does one stave off boredom? To be honest, during those early hours without power, I wasn’t necessarily bored but lost. Then “family time” and plain old “quiet” time took over, and familiar card and board games emerged, as did my long cast-aside journal. During the periods of time that I found myself alone, I didn’t consider myself “bored”.  I had plenty of time to write the “to-do” and “what-if” lists, and the “how about” opportunities. During these quiet moments, I was able to connect with some of my limitations and shortcomings, as well as to make plans for the future, and pray.
 
Being bored is like being in the desert. The absence of anything is what being in the desert must be like. In the desert is where Jesus met his fully human self – he was confronted by the temptations put before him. It was in the desert that Jesus came to know himself. It was in the desert that Jesus prayed. Maybe during this Lenten season, your personal journey can include putting aside electronics and creating the space needed for quiet, prayer, and reflection.