good life with hilary weeks
Part of cultivating a good life includes finding stillness.
Patricia Holland said, “Meditation is the language of the soul. It is defined as a form of private devotion, or spiritual exercise, consisting in deep, continued reflection on some religious theme.”
The world can be loud. I often long for and seek out moments of stillness. I need them – my soul requires solitude, otherwise I become overwhelmed with noise and confusion. For me, the moments of stillness don’t have to be long. Just a few minutes to pray, focus, relax, listen, go inward, and be intentional is enough.
I love this quote by Hermann Hesse: “Within you there is a stillness and a sanctuary to which you can retreat at any time and be yourself.” I usually invite God along too.
I recently created a list of intentions to read. I guess you could call it a mission statement or my positive affirmations. I keep it on my nightstand so it is handy when I begin and end the day. It is filled with ideas and truths about myself, God, and life. It is a reminder of my dreams. It keeps me moving towards the things I want to achieve. As I read, I hold a rock in my hand that I painted. It adds the sense of touch and helps me focus. Oftentimes, I will see the rock on my nightstand next to my list of intentions and it will remind me to stop, breathe, and focus for a few minutes.
I know — this makes me sound like I should wear Birkenstocks and eat raisins (not that there is anything wrong with either of those things!). But maybe we don’t take enough time or make enough effort to find stillness, and I believe it is an important element of happiness.
Recently I was quite worked up inside about an upcoming event. Instead of feeling peace, my heart felt tangled, like a knot in a delicate chain. No, it was more like three or four knots and I had no idea how to untwist them. I was afraid I would fail and the worry was squeezing out the joy.
One evening, I decided to find stillness. I stepped out onto the deck and breathed in the soft, warm, summer air. I let my shoulders drop. I began to talk calmly to God, letting him know the condition of my heart. Then I listened, and He replied, “Let go and trust.”
If I hadn’t taken a few minutes to be still, He wouldn’t have stood a chance of speaking to me because I wouldn’t have been listening. But in that precious, silent moment, I received the exact message I needed to hear.
What gifts can stillness bring you? How could you add a moment or two of quiet contemplation to your life? Who will you become as you take time to reflect on who you are and who you want to be?
“Quiet the mind and the soul will speak.”
a note from becky
Yes … as in THE Hilary Weeks. (!!!) Hilary and I still have yet to meet in actual, real life, but we’ve connected … chatted on the phone … texted … emailed … and I consider her to be my friend. Hilary’s music has been inspiring me for as long as I can remember. And while there are too many of her songs to mention, and I’ve personally loved most of them, I’ll just point out one of the first that I remember from her (when I was a teenager?) … which still remains a favorite: He Hears Me. *sigh* Incidentally, this was the very first song she ever published. Hilary has a God-given talent, not only in her actual voice, but the way she is able to reach countless thousands of people so personally through her music and her spirit. We are honored to have her share a piece of her heart with us here. What’s your favorite Hilary Weeks song??