I wrote this retreat on simplicity in 2001. These ten sessions are the beginning of a new series here on living a simple life. I hope these sessions open you to the foundations of living a life of simplicity, learning what is essential from the inside out, a process of faith and prayer. The essence of simplicity rests in our deep faith experience of the Paschal Mystery. All things die. New life emerges. This pattern is the element of God’s creating plan. Jesus’ dying and rising reveals the brevity of life. We cannot ultimately possess or control life. Life is a great gift given from our loving Creator. I hope you enjoy this seventh session. You may download the entire series here:
Simplicity: Loving, Living, Serving by Ronald Patrick Raab, C.S.C. (Fatima Retreat Center, 2001)
Session Eight: God alone heals
- Each day our hearts and minds are faced with much tragedy and suffering. Pain becomes a backdrop as television blares, cell phones ping and laptops capture our attention. We are overwhelmed with violence and we are becoming numb to those who really are suffering. No single dose of aspirin will relieve the world’s headaches and cares.
- As complicated people we turn to the simplicity of a relationship with God and discover a potential for healing. God is the source of all life, including healing. God waits for us to open ourselves to this love, as individuals, as families, as a world.
- We become addicted to many ways of life, relationships, drugs, medications, possessions, clutter, food, patterns of behavior, all of which we hope will heal us and lead us into freedom. Simplifying our motives, actions and schedules can provide a space for God’s healing.
- Do not be sad and do not weep. Nehemiah: 8
- Do you know that a little yeast has its effect all through the dough? 1 Corinthians: 5
- …as I have done, so you must do. John: 13
- I am the bread of life. John: 6
- I have come to rate all as loss in the light of the surpassing knowledge of my Lord Jesus Christ. Philippians: 3
- ‘My daughter,’ he said, ‘your faith has restored you to health, go in peace.’ Luke: 8
- Yahweh, hear my prayer, let my cry for help reach you; do not hide your face from me when I am in trouble…Psalm: 102
Together, we reach out, God to touch the hem of your Son’s garment. We ask you Father, mend the garment of our common baptism shredded by sin and doubt. Heal us when we think we can mend ourselves.
Heal our communities of pain, of separation, of anxiety, of addiction, of ill health, of exhaustion, of heartache, of fear so that we may weave together common threads of your healing love into a fabric of baptismal commitment. Anoint us in love through Christ the Lord.
- How are you relying on God’s healing for you and your family?
- How are you living out God’s healing within your relationships?
- How are you being called to trust God?
- How would you describe our Church’s need for God? Or society? Your family?
- What is the relationship between simplicity and healing?