Watching deer move through a forest helped me think about God. May we discern the unmistakable flicker of God’s Spirit at work in our world.
A Flicker of Movement
Three days at the Franciscan Spiritual Center in Aston, PA, was exactly what my spirit needed. The hermitage was a peaceful space with a beautiful porch and enclosed sitting area overlooking a wooded area. I spent hours reading, praying, writing in my journal, and watching the woods.
All kinds of wildlife made their home in those woods. I would sit quietly, hoping to spot the deer slowly making their way up and down the hill. The harder I sought them out, the more elusive they became.
When I turned my attention to reading, meditation, writing in my journal, it was then that the deer would appear. Focused on my book, the tiniest flicker of movement would catch my eye. A flash of white against the brown of the woods, the twitch of an ear, a minor step forward would announce the presence of the deer.
As I focused my gaze on the area of movement, it was almost mystical how one of these creatures would appear from the shadows. The deer never traveled alone. Once I saw one, there were always others nearby.
The key to seeing the deer clearly was discerning their slightest movements and watching expectantly as the deer revealed themselves.
So it is with God
Sometimes we desperately long to see God. We search the horizon of our lives for something, anything of God. But unfortunately, the harder we look, the less we see.
Not finding what we were expecting or longing to see, we give up looking.
We feel alone, abandoned. Questions arise:
- Is God real?
- Does God care?
- Is there something wrong with me?