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Come ...and rest awhile


Today's Gospel has Jesus telling his apostles, after they had reported all they had done and taught, "come away by yourselves to a deserted place and rest a while." So they went off in a boat by themselves. People saw them leaving and went after them on foot from all the towns and arrived before them. Jesus saw the vast crowd, "his heart was moved with pity for them, for they were like sheep without a shepherd; and he began to teach them many things."

This Gospel makes me think of how often we are called to be both apostolic and contemplative at the same time. Jesus wanted to be alone with his apostles and let them rest, but the needs of the crowd came and touched his heart. And so it is with us. We may feel the need to go to a quiet place and then someone turns up and needs us. We are both contemplative and apostolic at the same time. It is "breathing in and breathing out"! We do need time to pray, but we also are called to be for others. Prayer is also both contemplative and apostolic.