all the options.
Our first advice is to follow all the links and explore all the resources
that are built into each week's guide. Use the helps and suggestions
along the way. This retreat is designed to be made by someone who
just has time to go online and read the week's guide and return periodically
throughout the week. The key to making this a powerful experience
in everyday life is to let the whole experience become the background
for each week of every day life. Each of us may feel we are doing
this "alone" but God will be working in us and showering graces upon so
many of us, in so many places, in so many ways.
it simple and stay faithful.
This is simpler than it looks. Trust the process. Just like with
physical exercise, we don't want to overdo it at first, and then sluff
off after a brief attempt. Good physical exercise is cumulative
- we don't feel stronger or have greater endurance immediately.
But if we persist at regular exercise, we soon find that there are real
changes in our physical health and strength. Throughout these
34 weeks, we will discover that the effect keeps growing. We will
experience some excitement, a lighter heart, growing freedom, and an
easy generosity, all through a natural and very healthy integration
of these exercises into the fabric of our life. If we are
faithful and patient, we will experience a tremendous joy in this retreat
- for ourselves and for the benefit of our loved ones and friends.
If you experience yourself getting too busy for a given week or two,
don't give up. Jump back in. The site is designed to connect
with this week's guide and be able to move back and review past guides.
Even if we chose not to be in a regular group as part of this retreat,
there are several important ways we might share these graces with others.
First of all, please tell others you know who might welcome this retreat.
Many of us e-mail friends and relatives around the country. Tell
them about the retreat. If this retreat becomes the background
of our everyday living, then it will best do that if it is the background
of my everyday relationships. Secondly, you may know someone
who doesn't have access to a computer, perhaps a spouse at home.
Consider printing some of the key pages for them. (On a number
of printers, the enlarged picture for the week will print fairly well.)
Thirdly, read the sharing of others. We can all benefit
from listening to the graces God is offering others. Please consider
offering your experience of these weekly exercises to that sharing.
Finally, if you do not have a spiritual director, consider this to be
a wonderful opportunity to ask someone to accompany you through this
in a Journal.
wonderful way to let this retreat become deeply effective is to keep
a journal. [And, as long as we are sitting at a computer, it can easily
be done in a document each week.]
we have to do is jot down two things:
What have I been asking for this week?
What am I grateful for having received?
on these questions each week will allow us to notice and track patterns
developing in our desiring and in the graces God is giving us.
the language of God in our hearts and in every day life is part
of the graces offered us in this retreat.
of us already use e-mail to share with friends. We have learned how
powerful a tool this is for connecting across the miles. Consider sharing
your experiences of this retreat by e-mail, with someone or some group
you correspond with regularly.