HomeQuiet Time
Retreats at home

Finding time for something special

Thought about a retreat?

Have you thought about having an extra special quiet time ‘retreat’ at home?

Many people find their circumstances prevent them from going away for a retreat, whether it be financial reasons, young family, a relative to care for, or something else, but they would dearly love a retreat.

I think it is possible to do something special. You may well not be able to take out a whole day, couple of days, or week, but you can have some special quiet times.

Below are some different ideas about how you may be able to make an extra special quiet time 'retreat'.

Plan A: Plan ahead

My first suggestion of a way of doing this is to plan ahead. Get all the jobs done you can ahead of time. Be up to date with the mending, washing, ironing, tidying. Plan the meals—maybe even cook them and put them in the freezer. Get as many of the normal tasks done as you can so you have as much free time as possible. Forgo the TV for the period!

Use all your freed-up time for the day, or days, for prayer, Bible Study and being still before God. If you feel this is not possible for you, what about this next idea?

When you realise one day that you haven’t got anything much going on that day, decide there and then that this is your day!

Plan B: This is my day

I managed this next one with young children snapping at my heals. This one only requires planning ahead in that you decide what you want to spend your quiet time contemplating. Then, when you realise one day that you haven’t got anything much going on that day, decide there and then that this is your day! Dedicate a few minutes every quarter of an hour to prayer. This usually means you only have 10 minutes or so to do anything between prayer times so don’t expect to get anything much done and be calm and patient rather than rushing around trying to jam jobs into those 10 minutes—otherwise your quiet few minutes won’t build up to anything. Pray with your young children if you like as they can sit still for a few minutes at a time.

When I did this I chose a subject to pray over and wrote out lots of Bible verses on that subject, then each 1/4 hour I prayed over that verse and it gave me something to think about in between times too. Yes, the postman may ring the door bell just as you begin to pray but don’t get upset, answer the door—your few minutes may not work every time—just move on.

Plans C and D: Morning Larks or night owls

This next one doesn’t work for me but I know others who would find this a great idea. Decide to get up early, either one day or over a series of days. If you are up before everyone else use the quiet as your special time alone. If you normally have a quiet time in the mornings, make it an extended time. Try to continue your attitude of retreat during the day too when possible. Don’t forget to go to bed early the night before so you can benefit most from it.

You may find the reverse is more possible for you—staying up late for your extra special time.

Plan E: Retreat for a treat

You may find yourself able to go out for your retreat. Perhaps somewhere quiet like the park (children can play while you pray) or the countryside, perhaps somewhere ‘noisy’ like a café but you can sit alone. Maybe you can dedicate journey time to a retreat.

I am sure if you decide you want a special retreat like time you can make one. You just need to decide.

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This article © Linda Faber 2006-2009.