Seven Summer Practices
It started with the Friday night book study discussion, ”Serve God, Save the Planet. “There is agricultural wisdom in the scriptural mandate to let a field rest or go fallow every seven years”, I added thinking this wisdom is common knowledge. “But, it’s been lost in our over scheduled lives”, the group chimed in. The concept of Sabbath, of sacred rest applies to all living things and should be revived. People need to rest after working six days. Keeping the Seventh day holy was not about piety as much as it is about keeping spiritually and physically healthy. God rested on the seventh day after working six days to create the world, why don’t you rest after work? The spiritual practice of stopping to rest at sunset is another way to keep in touch with the rhythm of the earth.
During one of my spiritual retreats I gave everyone a small dot to place on their analog clocks. Place the dot on the number seven to remind yourself to stop and pray at 7 am and 7 pm. It’s easier than sunrise and sunset prayers. However, during the summer retreats, my group would go out to watch the sunset in silent prayer.
Finding the right time for prayer is not a chore if you just take a minute or two, to reflect the events of the day. Thank God along the Way. A Seven minute prayer at seven. Begin your day with a prayer walk, at seven am or whenever you get up. It doesn’t matter if you pick the sunrise/sunset or the 7 AM/PM sacred time method. Every day is enveloped in prayer.
Start with the habits your already enjoy and revive your spirit. Consider your favorite places, scenes which feed your soul, chairs that comfort you. This place becomes your sacred space, where you can relax and read, pray, write, or meditate. Every time you sit there it has the power to calm your spirit and revive your soul.
There are many Spiritual practices to connect with God and your own spirit. I’ve listed seven below that I will teach this summer.
- Sunrise/sunset Meditation or Seven and Seven Sabbath
- Labyrinth: Prayer Walk
- Lectio Divina: Divine Reading / Listening to God
- Expand your Divine Vocabulary
- Spiritual Gardening
- Water color
- Writing your Gospel
May the Spirit of God be with you, Pastor Deborah Lind-Schmitz