Look at the Purple Sky

By Charlotte Phillips

Recently, I was able to go to Atlanta to Ignatius House, one of a handful of Jesuit Retreat Centers left in the Jesuit East Providence, for five wonderful nights on a silent retreat.

After dinner on the second night, roughly 24 hours into my retreat, I went outside to get in one more quick walk before sunset. Feeling a little unsettled and missing my family, I was looking down at my feet trying to clear my mind as I hurried up the stairs to the outdoor chapel.

As we were both walking, another woman pointed to the sky. I gave her a puzzled look, and thankfully she broke silence to whisper to me, “Look at the purple sky.” I looked up and mouthed a silent, “Wow, thank you!” before we parted in different directions.

I continued to walk up the outdoor stairs in hopes of getting a better view of the horizon. As I continued to walk, I was in such awe of the beauty of the sky. To my left, the white clouds began to effortlessly blend into a beautiful shade of purple before meeting the still blue sky. To my right, I noticed the pink and orange sky moments before the sun settled down below the tree line.

This moment of being in awe of God’s creation helped to set the tone for the rest of my retreat. That moment of seeing all the different colors in the sky filled me with such gratitude for so many of the wonderful gifts God has given us that I often take for granted. In that moment I thanked God for my family and for the gift of being able to spend those five days in silence, savoring and soaking in the uninterrupted time I got to spend with God in prayer.

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