Last week I enjoyed the stability of an icy day. The Benedictine vow of stability provides for our need to be rooted in Christ, to be grounded in the present moment, and practicing gratitude regardless of our circumstances and of the uncertain future. Seasons come and go, “but the word of our God stands forever.” (Isaiah 40:8) We learn from the seasons that they and all things do, indeed, pass. The icy, chilly weather prevents us from traveling too swiftly; there is something to learn from this staying put. This paradox, that we must stay grounded during the changing seasons, encourages us to move a little slower and to learn from the present moment. The icy weather gives us no choice but to stay put. Perhaps when we are going through “icy” relationships or experiences, we can apply the Benedictine principle of stability.
“Winter is a lesson about the fine art of loss and growth. Its lesson is clear; There is only one way out of struggle and that is by going into its darkness, waiting for the light, and being open to new growth.” -Joan Chittister
“Few consider their inner wintertime something to enjoy, yet this season is vital for spiritual growth. The human spirit needs dormancy and rest, silence and solitude. Winter provides this opportunity so we can slow down and refocus our direction and purpose in life…Winter is the season of waiting. It requires great trust and a willingness to believe that this angst will not last forever.” -Joyce Rupp and Macrina Wiederkehr, The Circle of Life, The Heart’s Journey Through the Seasons