Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Blogger's Block?

I am definitely having writer's block of late. This year has been off to a pretty good start, but much like 2011, this first month has flown by!

It was easy to be reflective over Christmas break because I had TIME. Once school kicks in, it's full steam ahead, and we're there. I've had to make a pact with God that when I go to my prayer time (when I take it- yikes!) that I will just be attentive to Him and ME. Using our prayer time for others is great and important, but I get so easily wrapped up in thoughts of school that it has begun to consume my life and my prayer- NOT COOL!

Hard to believe, but we start the second semester at the school tomorrow. I'm excited to see some of the sophomores I haven't seen yet this year and to meet my new freshmen. I had a really good semester this year, and I pray that this second year, second semester of teaching gets even better.


...except...one more thing. And this thing's okay 'cause it's about grad school and I'm doing that for MYSELF, right? Right.

I'm taking another Scripture course this semester and it's with a priest who is- no joke- 90. YEARS. OLD. He was there when I was in undergrad, which should come as no surprise because he's been there since like the 1950s...

A few months ago I was having coffee with two dear friends and we were talking about the "trifecta of adorable" and realized that each of us was partial to one of the three. The trifecta being: small animals (dogs in particular for my one friend), babies (naturally), and the elderly. We all know that my heart (and ovaries) only burst for babies on minimal occasions, and I almost take a little bit too much pleasure in reminding my students that animals were created inferior to man. But old people...damn if they don't make my heart of ice and stone melt.

So the ancient priest is adorable. And smart! Many of you are familiar with my 89 year old quick-witted grandmother who doesn't act a day over 70. This priest falls into similar territory, God love 'em.

Here's a pic of Babci in 2009 with my cousin, doing jello shots the morning AFTER my sister's wedding. Yeah. That's how we do. I may or may not have still been my bridesmaid's dress...it happens...

I've been taking my reflections of my Scripture studies with Father Nonagenarian a little to prayer...do you think that's breaking my no-school-during-prayer-time rule?! It's just good stuff!

So I said I had writer's block and now I'm talking about all of the things without even mentioning how awesome retreat was!

I think I'm postponing writing about it because it was so great and there's still alot for me to unpack. But I also think if I continue to postpone, I may never write about it, so here's the breakdown:

My spiritual director led another awesome retreat. That is all.



Just kidding! There were about 15 of us again this year and it's always an amazing group and I'm always in awe of what amazing people God has placed in my life.

This is why I'm confident He will continue to place the right people in my life at the right time.

The theme I originally wasn't crazy about when he told me what it was, but I KNEW he would rock it and God would rock it and we'd be all about it the minute we got there.

The group and my old roomies- reunited!

The theme was The Magi and Father broke it down into three talks or themes more or less: The Search, The Encounter, and then the Transformation.

The first talk was discussing the difference between Herod's search for Christ and the Magi's. The Magi didn't know exactly what they were searching for or what they would find. Herod did his research (or had others do it for him) but his motives were impure. The Magi were much more open. Father challenged us to ask ourselves: are we still searching for Christ? And if so, are we searching openly or selfishly?

For the Encounter piece, we talked about the gifts that the Magi brought and each of there significance. The gold was fit for a king and a sign of beauty. Frankincense is a pleasant oil used for worship and the sacrifices of a priest (meant to cover the nasty smell of animal sacrifices back in the day- yuck!)

Father had broken us up into small groups to discuss the gifts and my group got the last gift- myrrh. Another oil, but not as pleasant. It came from kind of a broken looking, nasty, gnarly tree and was used for embalming dead bodies. Fun! What a gift for a king, right? We looked at the symbolism of it and were asked to reflect on how we could offer such a gift.

I thought it interesting that the others in my group were the other single people and my friend G who has been struggling with infertility. Our plights were different from my other friends who were all engaged or married in the other groups. I thought the symbol of myrrh- a strange, different kind of gift- was fitting for the unconventional sacrifices that my small group itself has to offer- our "strange", unconventional struggles of singleness and infertility in a world that expects marriage and babies at this time in our lives.

Father also encouraged us to think about places we search for and encounter Jesus. The Retreat Center where we were is a place where I often encounter God. My friends from CUA and I love going there because it has had so many peaceful, joyful memories involving God and our friendships.

Lastly, Father asked us- how are we going to leave transformed? The Magi departed The Holy Family by a different way than which they came. Were we going to do the same? How?

The retreat overall brought me much joy, but like I said, I'm still unpacking certain pieces. But I"m so grateful, and as always, I can think of no better way to start a new year!

Well, off to....I was GOING to say, starting a new semester, but I'm trying to cut the school-ties so to speak, so I will tell you what I'm ACTUALLY going to be doing right now and that is this:

Watch the Bachelor! haha!

A girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do...don't judge. (Though I will be judging ALL of the contestants on this show but that's because they are CRAZY :).


1 comment:

Jeremiah 29:11 said...

Sooooo glad you posted! As you know, I've had writers block also. What's up with that??

Loved reading your recap of the retreat - it brings me back.

Hoping to see you and pray together again soon. YOU ROCK!!