Notes from journal after two hours of retreat at the river preserve:
If you go to the woods for a few hours to hear God and all you hear are songbirds, is that so much of a loss? And if you return home with reflections about songbirds which ring true, have you not then heard from God who is Truth?
The water skeeter walks on water and the surface tension is his ally. If you want to walk on water you must make that surface tension between the physical world and spiritual world your ally, not your enemy. When you say “will this idea float” you are not asking to set down pylons of concrete to support it, you are looking, listening for a positive reaction to the surface tension: buoyancy. You are recognizing the water and the air together.
The time it takes to listen well goes beyond getting enough time for your own Sabbath rest. You must charge your own batteries and an auxiliary one as well. You give from a place beyond well-rested. It’s internal peace, surplus. One of the greatest gifts you can give those you listen to is to spend time listening first to God, songbirds, and nothing in particular. Then you are (more) ready.
I saw a snake, only his head shiny, the rest dull as he molted. You have to be comfortable in your own skin to listen well. If you are molting, you may be too focused on your own task at hand and too dull to give a good, shiny reflection.