Before you begin your retreat, pause for a few minutes and begin to relax. Take several deep breaths, and allow yourself to grow still. Be aware of God's loving presence within you.
I call heaven and earth today to witness against you: I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. Choose life, then, that you and your descendants may live, by loving the LORD, your God, heeding his voice, and holding fast to him.
Life and blessing, or death and curse? It's our choice. What does it actually mean to choose life? How do we know if a choice will be life-giving? The Book of Deuteronomy offers three criteria. When our decision is based on our love of God, when we pay attention to what we've heard God say in our own hearts as well as through others, and when we hold fast to God no matter what, we can be confident that whatever choice we make will lead to life. And the life we choose is not for ourselves alone, but so that others may live.
What does choosing life mean for me right now?
How do I include others in the choices I make?
(Speak to God using this prayer or one that you choose.)
God of Life, your call to choose life echoes throughout all of creation. Help me to love, heed, and hold fast to you.