Nov 26, 2012

Soon...Sort Of

My journey as an Aspirant has taken quite an adventure. Over the past year and several months, I have gone through several Aspirant partners, my mentor being in the hospital and way too much getting off topic. In another three or four or maybe five months I will enter the next phase of formation working towards making my temporary promise.

One of the requirements for entering the next phase is to write about why you want to be a Carmelite. As if what I want is at all important. God just keeps shoving me in the direction He wants me to go no matter how much I want to go in a different direction. (I'm still trying to convince Him that He wants me to win the lottery, but no luck so far.)

Since entering Carmel I have felt so much closer to God. My prayer life has expanded and I'm no longer fighting God on where He wants me to go. It's like I've found home. This is where God wants me to be. I am still a long long way from being a saint, but I'm finally on the right track.

With God's mercy and guidance I will move on to the next phase and maybe in another two years, I will be making my first promise. It may take longer. I trust that however long it takes, it will be due to all of the work God has to do to get me where I need to be.

Nov 5, 2012

Missing It Already

Well, I've spent another fabulous weekend at Broom Tree Retreat Center.

This is my third time there and I've discovered that there seems to be a pattern developing.

On Thursday evening I am so stressed out, yet so excited to be there away from all the craziness that is my life, that I feel like I'm just running in circles not knowing what to first. Do I go spend time in adoration in the chapel, or visit St. Isidore & Maria Chapel (my favorite place), or walk the stations of the cross path, or play with Coco and the other dogs out roaming about, or puruse the gift shop (my second favorite place), or find a spot to camp out and read until the retreat starts. I usually end up not really doing anything and collape into bed around 11:00 or midnight.

Friday is when the real work begins. I get into the rhythm of the conference and have a very productive day working through all of the things that sent me to the retreat to begin with. I get time to do all of the things I wanted to do on Thursday. Except for rosary. My room had this wonderful rocker/recliner, which is to blame for my missing rosary on both Friday and Saturday. It was so easy to fall asleep in...and I did. Fell asleep in the chair that night too. (Note to self...get one of those chairs)

Saturday morning I wake up completely drained. I don't feel like doing anything, especially not group activities, but I do them any way. As the day goes on, my desire to spend time with God, either in adoration or individual prayer that by the time we reach Holy Hour in the evening, I feel like a 13 year old at a Justin Beiber concert. I do refrain from giggling and squeeling, although I want. Eventually I pull myself out of the Chapel and go back to my room where I spend the next hour or more in prayer.

Finally on Sunday, I feel completely at peace. I pack up first thing in the morning so that I can enjoy my last few hours in the tranquility without the last minute rush at the end.

The peace that I gain from the silent retreat lasts for days afterward. Until the craziness kicks in and ruins it all. Then when it gets to be too much, I'm ready to go back and start all over again.