A few weeks ago I made a hasty retreat to the Carmelite Monastery on Benton Street here in Santa Clara. I just needed to go and be with God and this is a beautiful, tucked away place that is so quiet and picturesque (so I also brought my camera). I was open to hearing from God. I could use some divine direction. Not opposed at all to God writing on the wall or splitting the skies open to communicate with me. I kind of prefer the obvious. So I headed for the chapel, a beautiful sanctuary that is very ornate, much like the churches I've seen in Italy, only smaller. I brought my friend iPod along to add to my prayer and worship experience. I turned the volume up just enough so it was almost background music because I wanted to sing along and utilize the incredible acoustics in that room. I joined in with the first song rather quietly, yet worshipping, but realized this place was made to be filled with the praises of our God, or so I thought. I put on an old worship classic, "I Stand in Awe," and I decided I was going to let it rip! I sang my brains out and listened to the mix of the music in my ears and my voice reverberating off the walls and ceiling. It was quite the audio experience. I was putting on my own private concert for God and I was digging the sound effects. Who knows how long I would have stayed there singing, but in walks a little old nun, sweet as can be, approaching me with just a little trepidation, and informs me that the sisters were going to be starting their prayers soon, so could I pray quietly to myself. "... but you have a beautiful voice!" she added as she clasped her hands to her chest. Uh, thanks. So I sat down and wondered if I should be embarrassed just a little. Nah. It isn't everyday you get complimented and shut down by a nun in the same conversation.