Sedona was the place where I was able to breathe in the presence of God, and breathe out the cares that weighed me down. My trip there was by accident; solo and serendipitous, a Spirit-led journey that I later saw as a pilgrimage.
That journey was a sweet interruption of a struggle with a toxic job and breast cancer. Throughout those troubled times, I often read Psalm 40: 1-3. When I drove into Sedona and saw the massive red rocks, I felt God was lifting me up and “set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.”
While the amount of time I was in Sedona was brief, its impact was long-lasting. By traveling alone, I was able to move about freely without the constraints of a schedule or negotiating what-are-we-going-to-do next, or having constant conversation with companions. Instead, I could stand in the shadow of Cathedral Rock, wander down a dirt road just to see where it led, and sit in meditative prayer in the Chapel of the Holy Cross. Sedona became a template for how to renew myself by being alone and present with God. Later, I made taking a yearly ‘pilgrimage’ a spiritual discipline, feeling the benefit of going away to be renewed and gain perspective on my life.
My hope is that my blog will be a place we can explore together how to allow ourselves the time apart that we need to journey toward a greater self-understanding that is informed while in the presence of God.
How about you?
Have you taken a journey that felt like a pilgrimage?
How did it impact your life?
In what ways did you continue the practice of drawing away to yourself?