Do you have a collection of items that have special meaning to you? Are they scattered to various shelves, drawers and tables throughout your home? Part of our homework for the Create Space on-line retreat this weekend was to gather our meaningful, inspirational items and put them all on one location which we could call our sacred space. Liz recommended a few basic items to get us started: a cloth to cover the table, a candle, bits of nature, a photo, artwork and anything else that held soulful meaning to us. Here is what I hunted and gathered to create my little prayer corner in our master bedroom.
The illustration of the woman on the beach is by Becky Kelly, one of my favorite artists, the nest symbolizes my three sons and, of course, Holy Mother Mary holding baby Jesus, embodying my highest calling ~ gentle motherhood. I received the icon of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in the mail and thought it was particularly beautiful even though I don't know much about the meaning behind it.
An icon of the holy family my sister brought me back from Greece, a Peaceful candle which represents my soul's greatest desire, blue glass bottle with Faith jewel from my best friend years ago, and a small silver bowl I received after attending the house blessing ceremony at our friend's home.
The large seashell reminds me the ocean nearby and my rosary looked like the pearl inside the shell. I am always drawn to crosses and have several around the house. I moved this beaded one to my altar space because it is so colorful and signifies the need for creativity and beauty in my life.
My favorite thing about this sacred space is the pouf I found at Tar-jay. It is so comfortable and allows me to sit with my feet crossed in front of me yogi style without my legs falling asleep!
The table I used is actually an old pressed wood shelf so there is a second shelf underneath. I decided to place my Bible, rosary guide, prayer journal and whatever book I am reading for spiritual inspiration. Right now it is The Jesuit's Guide To Almost Everything by James Martin, SJ. The book is such easy, conversational reading and is a good starting place if you have ever been interested in taking up the practice called The Examen. Here is the basic formula for the daily practice:
1. Become aware of God’s presence.
2. Review the day with gratitude.
3. Pay attention to your emotions.
4. Choose one feature of the day and pray from it.
5. Look toward tomorrow.
Doesn't that seem like an appropriate way to spend some time in one's sacred space? I think I will make an effort to at least do this when I have time to sit on my pouf!
The little corner by my side of the bed now feels like my own private world ~ a tiny spot just for me. (Although I will admit that my boys also love my pouf and have tried to use for everything from a giant beach ball to an exercise ball. I finally had to make it off limits unless the user is actually sitting on it!)
Even a candle set in a place just for you to enjoy can become your own private altar. I have this candle beside my computer. I light it in the morning and it makes my blogging time seem like a holy practice of reflection and love. Maybe over the next few days you'll come upon small items that you wish to bring together, to set aside intentionally for your reflection and to light your own candle in honor of your loving Creator and His beloved creation.