What does God want for me? We began our annual spiritual exercises as a family last Friday night with this question. It was a new opportunity to have a break in Espinosa de Henares – a haven of peace, silence and starry nights- before the start of the academic year.
This year my wife and I were only going to be able to come for the weekend, and we took our two young children, Juan and Hector, with us. Spiritual exercises as a family.
It is true that other years we have been able to benefit from more days by coming separately. After all, the exercises are a call from God to be alone with him, a call to silence to let him speak to your heart and also a space to rest and recharge your batteries. So in theory the longer you come the more you get out of it. At the same time it normally takes a whole day to leave aside the rucksack of routines, problems and thoughts that we bring to prayer. It takes time to get used to this dynamic of calm listening. But although a weekend may seem like a short time, I have to say that it has been a gift for me to be able to come to exercises as a family, this year.
Spiritual exercises as a family
The boys enjoyed themselves with everything that D. Quixote and Sancho Panza, (that is what the sisters who took care of them called themselves), had prepared for them. After the guidelines, Elena and I would go up to the chapel with the world map. Every so often we would look at each other, as if to say “he is talking about us.”I appreciated having time to take a walk and share these inspirations that I had just received from God. At the same time we had the little ones close. I know that it gave Elena a lot of peace of mind and this also helped us to connect.
But above all and most importantly, Jesus knows that you come to see him, to be with him, to offer him the time you have and he comes to you straight away without wasting a minute. We connected that very Friday night, because there was no time to lose.
We took his message directly to our hearts. And we can only thank him for putting a whole community of brothers and sisters at our service. They helped us to speak to him and listen to his voice, and to continue to “walk together in the Lord”.