Opening the Curtains

Image by Rob Wingate at Unsplash

I’ve recently had a curtain pole and curtains installed in my office. I’ve not had any curtains in this room since we moved here over nine years ago. This is mainly because the room faces north so gets no direct sunlight even on the brightest of summer days and I thought that having curtains, however far back I can pull them when they’re open, would only make the room darker than it is anyway.

I’ve always been someone who needs to have plenty of light. I suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder and this often leads to mild depression in the winter. So, I go round putting on lights as soon as daylight starts to fade and closing shutters and blinds to keep the outside gloom at bay.

Yet, having the curtains in my office has given me a new pleasure. Each morning, I can pull them back: a physical expression of letting in the light of a new day. Whether that’s summer brightness, a non-descript greyness or even heavy rain, I get much more of a sense of anticipation as a new day begins than I used to without the curtains.

The first thing I do when I sit at my desk is to fire up the laptop and open my spiritual curtains via the Pray as You Go website I first discovered this site when someone mentioned it at the weekly online prayer group I belong to.

The details remained on a scrap of paper, buried amongst all the other ‘I must look at these sometime’ scraps of paper until it re-emerged during one of my thrice yearly tidying sessions. I visited the site and was totally captivated.

Pray As You Go is based on Ignatian Spirituality. Each session (less than fifteen minutes), starts with music ranging from well known spiritual pieces like Spem in Alium through Taize chants, African music from the Keur Moussa monastery to modern worship songs, followed by a Bible passage and questions for self reflection and prayer, the session finishing with The Grace.

I find this time so helpful and calming. A chance to draw close to God before a busy day. I feel myself opening the curtains of my soul in the gentlest way possible, to bathe in God’s light.

How do you start your day?

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