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Blog Carnival : Sacred Pauses

February 8, 2013

To highlight her new book, Sacred Pauses: Spiritual Practices for Personal Renewal, April Yamasaki is hosting a blog carnival. I have a copy of the book and will be posting a review soon. But I thought this was a really cool idea and wanted to participate in the carnival as well!

April posted two questions which prompted me to reflect on the idea of sacred pauses:
What sacred pauses have you experienced?
What does it mean to share sacred pauses with family/friends/others?

I’m always on the look out for practices which help me create space for spiritual growth and connection with God. With a busy schedule that includes family, congregational life, seminary study, and a host of other things, I often value practices that can easily integrate into my daily rhythm. I have discovered that having a brief moment to intentionally pause and reflect can be very helpful, and even sacred.

A recent type of sacred practice was introduced to me by my wife. One day I started seeing 3x5in note cards popping up around the house. When I took a closer look I found that on each card she had written a quote from St. Teresa of Avila:


The cards were placed at common locations we spend time at each day (bathroom mirror, refrigerator door, etc). These are places we normally rush through or past in the course of getting ready in the morning or retiring for the evening. But having the card there allowed space to pause, pray and center myself. I think I’ll call this sacred pause the “Toothbrush Prayer.”

My wife said she was inspired to do this as a way to pause, find calm and reflect in the midst of everyday stresses and busyness (and also the fact she’s married to a Philly sports fan, if you ask me). Sometimes it is just difficult to slow down. This practice has helped us to do so, even if just for a short time, and I’m so glad she introduced it in our home.

This is a neat little sacred pause we have been experiencing. What daily spiritual practices do you find to be refreshing?

  1. February 9, 2013 11:11 am

    I love the Toothbrush Prayer! and thanks for joining my blog carnival!

  2. February 10, 2013 9:40 pm

    One practice I tend to lean into (though, admittedly, I haven’t in a month or two, what with coming toward the final days of our pregnancy) is tech-fasting once a week: Just turning off all the e-devices, cell phone, computer, etc; basically anything with a screen. It’s been really helpful both in just binding our family so much closer together, as well as in self-reflection and just realizing how much I rely on and am addicted to all of these gadgets, which serves to push me to try and utilize them in healthier ways throughout the rest of the week.

  3. February 10, 2013 11:05 pm

    Thanks for sharing this, Harold. My wife and I have had some discussion about the tech-fast, and I think we will be trying it in some form soon. I rely on tech stuff a lot as well, so it will be a challenge. But one I hope to grow from as you have. And many blessings to you and your family as you await the arrival of a little one!

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