It has become an annual habit of mine to get away in silence and solitude for a few days. It takes days because the first half of the silence is about getting the mind geared down.
On entering the silence, it is good to not have in mind the goal of massive reading or writing. Take into the silence the discipline of limited reading. Ask the Lord beforehand what Scripture to focus on. Use only that passage until the Spirit directs you further in the time of retreat. I have focused on a few chapters the Spirit directs me to, then find in the retreat that the Spirit will say, “Now, go to this other passage. I have something for you there.”
The power of silence and solitude is that it is the opportunity for the Lord to gift you with his presence. It is the opportunity of intimacy that I have found unmatched in any other discipline I undertake. It is profound for me. Every time.
Our culture is one which is geared in many ways to help us evade any need to face this inner, silent self. — Thomas Merton
We need to face our inner lives… and in that silence also find the powerful presence of God.