After a near mental collapse, I took some time to reconnect with God. During that time, He gave me personal revelation and three specific things I needed to do to stay spiritually healthy. I didn’t realize then how much that revelation would mean to me later.

Twenty years ago, in an effort to evade an impending nervous breakdown, I left my four children in the care of their dad, and went to Florida for a month to simply be still and know God. It was perhaps the bravest and best thing I’ve ever done.

I arrived at my aunt and uncle’s small second home, which they had kindly loaned me for a month, in a blue rented Geo Metro, with one carry-on flight bag overstuffed with far too much emotional baggage. I was ragged and raw, depressed and desperate. But I had just enough wisdom—and organizational skill—to get myself across the country for this solitary respite. I wasn’t sure what my goal was. But I knew I needed to be quiet. Still. Alone. . . .

I learned to meditate, sitting in puddles of sun for hours at a time, gazing out at the Alafia River while wandering through mental mist, seeking God. I heard His voice in fragments of enlightenment over the course of the month. On the last day, I captured the revelations in words:

1) Take care of your family, living and dead.

2)   Do the work. (I know what He means.)

3)   Stay in the Church.

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