The One Minute Pause creates soul space

By Dave Henning / August 1, 2020

“The One Minute Pause . . . sounds almost too simple to be a practice that brings me more of God, but it’s very effective.  Because what it does is open up soul space, breathing room.  And God is right there.  Over time, the cumulative effect is even better.  It’s reshaping the pace of my day.  It’s training my soul to find God as an experience more common than rare.”- John Eldredge

John Eldredge concludes Chapter 1 of Get Your Life Back as he talks about a practice he views as an absolute lifesaver: the One Minute Pause.  Furthermore, as John explains, this practice consists of the following steps:

  1. Take sixty seconds to sit still and let everything go.
  2. As you enter the pause, begin with release.
  3. Pray – Jesus — I give everyone and everything to you.
  4. Repeat Step 3 until you feel you’re actually releasing and detaching.
  5. Choose two times a day when you find yourself least likely to get interrupted.

Above all, the author underscores, in one minute it’s impossible to fix anything or figure everything out.  And you can’t release everything perfectly or permanently.  That takes a lot of spiritual maturity.  But in sixty seconds, your soul cooperates a little bit and starts to settle down.  Certainly, this represents a small step.  And as you open space in your soul, God meets you there.

The desert fathers lived in the third and fourth century.  A courageous, ragtag group, these followers of Jesus fled the madness of their world.  Consequently, they sought a life of simplicity and beauty with God in the silent desert.  Because, as Thomas Merton wrote, the desert fathers saw the world as “a shipwreck from which every man had to swim for their life.”

In conclusion, John applies this to his life:

“There’s no pause to my day, no sacred space at all.  If God’s going to get in, he’s practically got to force his way.  But I’ve noticed that God doesn’t like to shout.  He doesn’t like to be forced to gymnastics to get our attention, no more than you like jumping up and down to get your friend or spouse to notice you’re in the room.”

Today’s question: Have you tried something similar to the One Minute Pause to give your soul space?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Need peace and orientation? – release first”

About the author

Dave Henning


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