When the disciples returned from their mission, so many people were after them, that Jesus took the disciples with Him to be alone and quiet. Here we see what might be called the rhythm of the Christian life. For the Christian, life is a continuous going into the presence of God from the world, and then going out into the world from the presence of God. It is like the rhythm of sleep and work. We cannot work efficiently or well unless we have enough sleep. Sleep will not be sound unless we have worked well and long.
This rhythm reveals two dangers in life. There is the danger of having a too active life. And, there is the danger that in all this activity, we could lose our way home. No person can work without rest and no Christian can rest unless he gives himself to God.
So, the question remains for us, when? If we are doing and going all the time, when is there time for God? When we talk about the Divine Liturgy we mean more than Mass. The Office of Hours is also a part of the Liturgical day; five different times of the day, we pray the psalms. The hardest one, I think is also the shortest-Midday Prayer around noon. Why? Because it is smack in the middle of the day; million things going on, lots of irons in the fire; to stop and be quiet even for a minute can be difficult.
But let’s try something. On Monday, why don’t we together stop at 11:30, for five minutes, two minutes, one minute; let’s stop and be quiet. Let’s try to listen for God. And if we say the Name of Jesus, He will already be there waiting for us.
You see, the Gospel is a warning for our children and us; that if we don’t practice being still in His Presence, we will become like sheep without a shepherd and forget what His voice sounds like. We will become restless.
The wonderful psalm says, “In verdant pastures He gives me repose; beside restful waters He leads me.” Jesus leaves it to us to find these places and discover the rest we need to live a truly Christian life.