When I first came to the Monastery, my Postulant Director repeatedly encouraged me to just be. I heard those words time and time again from her as well as from my Prioress. Just be they would tell me, as I asked them how to pray and how to adjust to life as a Benedictine Sister. Just be.
To me that phrase always seemed unfinished. Just be what? Just be how? Just be who? I had so many questions. I did not understand what it meant to just be. Admittedly, I have always been a doer. So to just be was a new concept for me. I was afraid of it, and I didn’t like how it sounded.
After nine years of living into my Monastic vocation I now appreciate what it means to just be a little bit better. I have come to understand that, in all my activity, I can run the danger of missing out because I tend to do too much and just be too little. I have come to understand that to just be does not mean to stop and do nothing. It is so much more than that. It is deeper than that. I have come to understand the blessing that comes when I take the time to just be.
On one level, to just be is a physical action. To sit still in silence of thought, word and action takes physical and mental discipline. The spiritual disciplines of silence, stillness and solitude may be quiet, but they are also full of adventure.
I find when I just be that God is waiting there to meet me. Getting away from the noise and busyness of life allows me to encounter God and allows me to be who and who God calls me to be. I love when I take the time to just be. Ironic isn’t it? They very thing I was afraid of at the beginning of my Religious Life is one of the things I treasure most!
So, I encourage you to just be. Whether it is for five minutes or twenty, sitting in your room, outside or before the Blessed Sacrament go ahead and try it. Take time to just be.
Be still and know that I am God. Psalm 46:10
Sister Lisa Maurer was born and raised in Sleep Eye, Minnesota. Before entering the Monastery in 2007, she taught and coached in Catholic Schools within the New Ulm Diocese. Sister Lisa Made her Perpetual Monastic Profession in July 11, 2012. Her first ministry as a Benedictine Sister was working at the parishes of St. Lawrence and St. Joseph in Duluth. Currently she is Director of Mission Integration for the Benedictine Health System.