Silence, Nature and Faith
When I was a child, I had ample opportunity for quiet days. I was the youngest of three by eleven years. We lived out on a lightly traveled country road. Most often, my days were solitary. My mother, who kept herself very happily busy with house chores, was always there when I needed her, but mostly I wandered around by myself. I'd follow the cat to the barn, throw sticks in the ditch and watch them float down stream, or lay on the grass and observing the clouds pass over head. I was very aware of the sound of the birds or the breeze that rustled through the leaves. If there happened to be a car, I'd watch it pass by and then stand just outside the trail of dust it left until I couldn't hear or see it anymore.
My childhood was not the most exciting, but it was peaceful and happy. I had time to listen, search and reflect.
My children have a very different life than I did. We live in a town, a fairly quiet town, but cars can be heard and seen often. The T.V., no matter how badly I want it to go away, is still ever-present as well as video games. It also rains here a lot which makes time outdoors difficult and, even if all those things didn't exist, my children have each other to keep the noise going.
I'm not sure, exactly, how to instill in my children a desire for stillness and reflection. I'm not even sure how to find it myself any longer. However, I think it's vital for a life of faith. The only thing I've come up with is to seek out a place on a hill top or somewhere with a view of some sort. A place that is quiet but full of the sounds of nature. I need to find this place and take my kids there often. I need to let them explore and just be somewhere away from all the noise of this world. And I need to do it for me as well.
Even Jesus would go off somewhere, away from the hustle and bustle, to pray.