Jason Yannuzzi
St. Luke’s, Lebanon

(Continued from previous post, Part II of II)

‘Working out your soul’ is a surprisingly natural thing when walking in the woods but I never would have imagined that beforehand. The sound of the forest is fascinating; it is hardly ever quiet but usually alive with millions of sounds. The sound of God’s awesomeness is everywhere: wind rustles through treetops, water chimes off of rock faces into streams, insects chirp and buzz, birds call out to each other, and a repeated thump, thump, thump of my feet represents the only evidence of human presence. Before experiencing this sound every day for six months, I was arrogant enough to think that ‘listening for the Holy Spirit’ was cliché. But it was during this time that I learned to hear the Spirit whispering to me and speaking to my heart. It could be the subject of many more blogs to expand upon the many issues I became more comfortable with by listening in this way.

Today, even though I sleep in a bed each night and no longer in the woods, my understanding of patience and listening are still affected by my hike. Especially in my responsibilities at Saint Luke’s, I often find myself freaking out at the immensity of what needs to get done for our Parish. I see results that I want for us so bad that it hurts. It always helps me to think about standing on Springer Mountain and focusing only about the few miles goal for that particular day and viewing that progress as a victory. Being patient. Similarly, when I am in need of a spiritual tune up, I know that it only takes me a short time in the woods to be able to listen for the Holy Spirit. Listening. I am thankful for my journey to have helped me develop in these concepts.

If interested, a daily blog of my hike is found at www.trailjournals.com/sailorjason.