Tuesday, September 29, 2009

God's Work

I am trying to characterize where I am right now in relation to discerning what God is up to.

More than ever I feel like I am a spectator watching the performance but somehow am still involved in the show itself...if that were possible.

I would say my hands are up. It is like an act of resignation, but not a desperate one without hope. There is peace nearby with a handful of confidence and assurance. I see trust as it approaches to talk about the future. His whisper passes my thoughts as I continue to teach and pour into the lives of others. He points out the close presence of caution and discernment, while pushing us into new areas. All the while I feel study touching my heart and leading this ambiguous, uncontrollable process.

I smell rumblings of newness coupled with an ancient sagacity. A fresh wind of spiritual revival sitting next to a familiar and much-needed tradition. The room feels comfortable, but uneasiness lingers; they constantly talk with each other without compromising each of their qualities.

We sit. We wait. There is peace. God is at work. It's hard to explain.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Brother Lawrence

Practicing the Presence of God is a good read for someone endeavoring to journey closer to God. Brother Lawrence sought to live life with God as a continual inward conversation with God done in humility and out of deep love.

This is an appealing endeavor for me, since I have been known to speak aloud to God as if he were a person in the room. The flies on the wall regularly asked me with whom am I speaking! As I read about my 17th Century Brother, I thank God for the reminder to talk with him and think on him regularly!

What is really cool about Brother Lawrence's admonition is that it is like prayer on speed! You are conversing with the divine, but you cannot stop at the Amen! You keep going. You must continue. It bleeds into your life. You must turn your mind to God as you do everything. It is a sort of OCD obsession with letting God in on doing laundry or homework or grocery shopping or driving or you name it! God is present...waiting to have that talk!

As you read his treatise, you get the sense that an inexpressible joy exudes from every pore! It is an attractive thing for me. To be so content with God...to be so aligned with his will...to be so one with his desires...to be so in his presence that the normal means that we have of accomplishing this oneness (i.e. times of prayer, worship) can be readily set aside. We are already there. We are already tasting the heavenly presence. Attractive isn't it? It is for me.

Well, at the risk of getting many of us checked into a mental hospital, I want to encourage us to spend our day talking aloud with God. Be aware of his presence. Ask him his thoughts. Wonder at his creation. Thank him for his blessings. Inquire what he would have you do. Experience his love.

Let me know how it goes.