Silent Sunday: Spring Awakening
Introduction to the mornign retreat
Introduction and opening prayer

Opening Chant

Listen to the following chant written by J. Phillip Newell, and feel free to join in when you get used to the tune:

You Shall Be Like a GardenChant
00:00 / 07:51

Lyrics:

You shall be like a garden,

Like a deep spring

  where waters never fail.

Lectio Divina (Sacred reading and hearing):

1. Reading  

Read the scripture passage through twice, and listen for a word or phrase that feels significant right now, that is capturing your attention even if you don’t know why.

 

Psalm 104 extracts:

Bless the Radiant One, O my soul!

O Lord our God, You are so very great!

You are clothed with splendor and majesty.

You wrap yourself in light as with a garment;

You stretch out the heavens like a tent,

  Your Radiance covering the waters;

You shine through the clouds, and ride on the wings of the wind;

The wind, like the Breath of Life, carries your Word,

Fire refines the dross of our souls.

 

You brought harmony to all the earth,

 that life might spring forth in abundance.

You created springs to flow into the valleys;

 they flow between the hills.

Giving drink to every creature of the field,

quenching their thirst as your

Living Water quenches ours.

With the air, You have given birds their habitation;

they sing among the branches.

The majesty of Creation is seen throughout the land,

the sounds of Creation mingle with the music of the spheres.

 

O You, who know all hearts, how manifold are your works!

In wisdom You have created them all.

O, that we might receive your gifts,

taking only what is needed

 with grateful hearts.

When we are in harmony with You,

the earth provides;

yes, a bountiful harvest to be shared with all.

When we misuse what You have created for us,

 we blame You for the famine and destruction that ensues,

 and feel alienated from You.

When you send your Spirit, new life is created,

and you renew the face of the Earth.

The beauty of the Radiant One endures forever, for

the works of Love are sure.

You are ever-present to us, even as the earth trembles,

even as the mountains spew forth ashes and smoke!

I will abandon myself into your hands as long as I live;

I will sing praise to You while I have breath.

May my meditations be pleasing to You,

for I rejoice and am glad in You.

May all who feel separated from You open their hearts to new Life!

Praise the Creator of the Universe!

Bless the Lord, O my soul!

Amen.

{Adapted from Psalms for Praying by Nan C. Merrill and the NIV}

 

2. Reflection 

Spend some time reflecting on the word or phrase that stood out for you, and allow the Spirit to breathe fresh life into these words. 

3. Response  

Allow yourself to respond spontaneously in prayer, in some response to God, using your own words. You could also respond through writing a psalm or prayer, or through some other form of creative expression.

 

4. Contemplative stillness  

Move into a time of simply resting in God. Slow your thoughts and reflections even further and sink into the experience of stillness. Rest in the presence of God and allow yourself to simply be.

(You can choose between a 10 minute timer and a 20 minute timer below, which each have a gong at the beginning and three gongs at the end).

Ten minute silence timerSilence
00:00 / 10:25
Twenty minute meditationSilence
00:00 / 20:28

Spring Prayer (taken from Jewish Passover):

Long before the struggle upward begins, there is a tremor in the seed.

Self-protection cracks, roots reach down and grab hold.

The seed swells, and tender shoots push up toward light.

This is spring awakening growth.

A force so tough it can break stone.

Chant: Slowly blooms the rose

Slowly blooms the rose withinOriental Orthodox Order in the West
00:00 / 02:22

Lyrics:

Slowly blooms the Rose within,

Slowly blooms the Rose within.

For further reflection:

 

I encourage you to spend some time in further reflection on this theme. Below are some possible readings for taking this theme further.

Trees, by Rumi:

Spring, and no one can be still,

with all the messages coming through.

We walk outside as though going to meet visitors,

wild roses, trilliums by the water.

A tight knot loosens.

Something that died in winter

lifts a head out, and opens.

Trees, the tribe gathers.

Who has a chance against such an elegant assemblage?

Prayer poem:

We can hear the Mystery call:

Come close,

Enter,

Bring what you have discovered

Bring what you have harvested,

Bring who you have become through the passage of circumstance and time.

 Enter and take your place in the intricate unfolding of creation.

The world needs you.

 Out of fear or habit

The soul hesitates,

It hides. It cries:

 There is too much uncertainty. There is too much pain.

I don’t want to go.

 I will wait, the Mystery responds.

I will wait for you to awaken,

I will wait for you to remember

  That you were born into this fragile existence

  To let your heart shatter and shine.

 

Rabbi Yael Levi, from A Way In: Jewish Mindfulness

Ending Prayer:

Lord of Beauty, though You have never left us,

Enter our souls anew and light the lamp in the eye of our hearts.

Nothing can help us now but Your beauty, which opens and consumes us so quickly;

Come, come, our Friend, the form of Your love is not a created form

When it touches us, we become who we truly are

For the inner secret is You, that which was never born.

You were the Dawn, the Source, the Spring.

We drink Your water and feel the currents take us.

You enter and suddenly we are nowhere and nothing again inside Your majesty

You are our freshness and we are with You now,

Amen.

(from the Oriental Orthodox Order in the West)

End this time of prayer with listening to this beautiful invitation:

Arise my loveMichael Card
00:00 / 03:33
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