Simple Advent, Abundant Life: the sacred art of pausing

What reminds you to take a break? Sometimes the author’s cat makes it impossible to work and reminds her it is good to pause. (Brenna Davis)

What reminds you to take a break? Sometimes the author’s cat makes it impossible to work and reminds her it is good to pause. (Brenna Davis)

by Brenna Davis

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Editor's Note: Welcome to Simple Advent, Abundant Life. These daily Advent reflections will explore connections between simple living and abundant life on the earth. They are inspired by the Advent Simplicity Challenge at the Ignatian Solidarity Network. Sign up here to receive the reflections each day in your inbox.

First week of Advent theme—Time

Day 5: Thursday, Dec. 3



"Live in a way that is kind to your soul. Keep vigil with your life."

"There is something in the cycles of the earth that speaks to the restless human heart. When we truly listen to the call of the seasons of the day and the year, our listening is transformed into what many people call prayer."

"Perhaps most of all, I have learned that way down underneath all the busyness, something (or is it Someone?) waits for us to come home to who we truly are. All it takes is a simple pause to get us in touch with the One who keeps vigil with us."

-Macrina Wiederkehr, Seven Sacred Pauses: Living Mindfully Through the Hours of the Day

In her book Seven Sacred Pauses, Macrina Wiederkehr invites readers to infuse the sacred Liturgy of the Hours into their daily lives in order to "ease the violence many of us carry in our hearts" due to the pace at which we live our lives. 

Using the Benedictine practice of pausing from work for prayer seven times a day, she encourages us to pause at particular moments in our day in order to "learn to be in the midst of so much doing." The art of pausing can be as simple as breathing, standing in front of a tree or plant, stretching or drinking a cup of tea — anything that you do with all of your intention. 

When might you intentionally pause during your day in order to "keep vigil with your life" ? How might pausing invite you into a simpler way of living?



Find a moment today to intentionally pause in the midst of whatever you consider to be your "work."

View Day 5 of the Ignatian Solidarity Network Advent Simplicity Calendar  for an opportunity to pause and listen to a song meant to provide hope on our journey toward simplicity and environmental justice this Advent.

Simple Advent, Abundant Life

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