One day last week, I had one of those days. I crammed it too full, and spent some of the day trying to talk myself down from a psychological ledge of my own creation, my stomach in knots as I wondered how I’d get everything done. I tried giving myself the advice I give to other people -- just move forward, one step at a time. Although it was good advice, it didn’t make the list any shorter.
By late afternoon, I needed a break. A nap was out of the question. Though it would relieve my tired, allergy-inflicted eyes, there was no time for such a luxury.
When I pulled out my iPad to check a file, I found my answer. A 3-Minute Retreat.
3-Minute Retreats are free daily meditations offered by Loyola Press. Retreats begin by encouraging you to set aside distractions and put yourself in God’s presence. When you’re ready to begin or move to the next screen, simply click on the continue button.
Each themed retreat has a scripture reading, set against a full color photo. Soft music plays in the background, but can be muted if a silent retreat is more to your liking. A reflection and questions to consider follow each reading, and the retreat concludes with a prayer. The online version contains an additional reflection on the home page for that day’s retreat.
You can access 3-Minute Retreats online, or via app or email subscription. I’m really happy with my app, which includes just the retreat itself, but on days when I plan to linger longer, it’s fun do to the retreat on the Loyola Press website, where I can also access prayers, information on our faith and faith formation and, of course, books and programs by Loyola Press. Although this is a publisher’s site, there’s a wealth of free, faith-based inspiration alongside the books and programs. At no point did I feel pressured to buy anything, which is great because that would have spoiled the retreat experience.
I like accessing my 3-Minute Retreats on my new iPad, but it would also be nice to have them available on my phone, which I can tuck in my pocket. 3-Minute Retreats are available for iPad, iPhone and Android, in addition to online and via email subscription, and are free regardless of platform.
Because as sad as it is to admit, sometimes three minutes is all we have. And on those days, it’s especially good to give ourselves a retreat and put ourselves back in touch with God.
Copyright 2015 Lisa Hess.
Photo by David Maio, via Unsplash.com
About the Author
Transplanted Jersey girl Lisa Lawmaster Hess is the author of a blog compilation, three novels, and three non-fiction books, including the award-winning Know Thyself: The Imperfectionist’s Guide to Sorting Your Stuff. A retired elementary school counselor, Lisa is an adjunct professor of psychology at York College of Pennsylvania. She blogs at The Porch Swing Chronicles, Organizing by STYLE, and here at Catholicmom.com. Read all articles by Lisa Hess.