Our hearts are restless

14 Mar

Today, I kept thinking about my yesterday’s reflection on desire.  One of the things I have desired over and over again over the years is rest.  I was reminded of Henri Nouwen’s desires for rest in his book “The Prodigal Son”

I was, indeed, the son exhausted from long travels; I wanted to be embraced… The son-come-home was all I was and all I wanted to be… I desired only to rest safely in a place where I could fee a sense of belonging, a place where I could feel at home.

This was the first time I had read the story of the Prodigal Son as someone who was looking for rest. I had always been told the interpretation of this story was that the son was a sinner returning and repenting. That interpretation is very clear in the parable itself, but Nouwen’s self-identification to this son resonated with me.

Lent is a time that we try to refocus, re-center ourselves “back home” in the embrace of the One who is waiting for us.  We run around frantically looking for ways to satisfy our heart. And nothing quite satisfies as finding rest in God. Today I am challenged to remember that my rest, my peace comes from God as Saint Augustine says in the opening of “Confession”:

Our hearts are restless until they rest in you oh Lord.

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