Finding God on Gannon’s campus Nathan Demarest: Taking care of yourself

Gannon asked students about religous perspective and worldviews in a recent online survey.

Gannon asked students about religous perspective and worldviews in a recent online survey.

I don’t know about you, (no, I’m not feeling 22) but I am feeling tired.  Dear reader, I hope you are doing really well. It’s been a long past couple of days for me with each day bringing plenty of schoolwork, meetings with clubs, appointments, meetings with professors, work at a job, meetings with friends – that’s a whole lot of meetings.

Where do any of us get any time to rest?

I’ve been asking myself that question more than a few times. It’s actually got to the point where I’ve been falling asleep while doing homework on my favorite couch instead of in my bed.

It has not been good for me. Especially, after the craziness of Homecoming weekend and with midterms fast approaching, there seems to be a plethora of assignments to be done and obligations to fulfill.

For those of you who do not feel this way, I am happy for you. I am a little envious, but glad that you have free time to use to take care of yourself.

That is the main part of what I’d like to talk about today: taking time to make sure you are taking care of yourself. It is undoubtedly important, and if we do not take that time, we become stressed to the max and end up utterly exhausted.

After all of the effort and time we put into doing things, we need time to unwind, whether that means hanging with friends, enjoying some Netflix and chill or spending introvert time by yourself to recharge. Whatever floats your boat.

However, another way of relaxing yourself is through prayer time, in whatever fashion that may be.

Now, one of the biggest lessons I’ve learned during my time at Gannon is that prayer comes in a multitude of forms.

There’s personal prayer, community prayer, formal prayer, informal prayer, vocalized praise, worship and then there’s silence.

Let’s talk about silence. There’s an awesome Scripture verse that goes like this, “Be still and know that I am God,” (Psalm 46:10).

I’m a believer that true peace comes from taking time to stop everything you are doing to reflect in silence, even if it only takes five minutes. You could use that time to think about things you are grateful for, or just to appreciate that moment.

I know it’s countercultural; I know it goes against every fiber of my being to keep still and just enjoy the moment, but I think it can work wonders.

Meditation is good too. That may seem like a far step to someone who is uncomfortable with sitting still for three minutes during class, but trust me; it can be done if you want it enough.

I got the chance to meditate for a little while this past Monday, and while it wasn’t the best experience I’ve ever had with prayer, it was worth it for sure.

It is extraordinarily tough for me to embrace quiet time and listen. By the way, did you ever notice that ‘listen’ and ‘silent’ are spelled with the same letters? There’s some food for thought.

This week, wherever you are, I DARE you to pause and spend time being still. Are you up to the challenge?



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