I have become aware in the past week of how much I still separate the spiritual or sacred from the physical or secular spaces in my life; but I am learning. I offered to pray for someone last night and they were eating dessert at the moment so they said, "Just wait till I finish." I asked, "Why? We can't talk to God while we eat? " So we prayed for her while we licked ice cream and Jesus came with his presence and compassion and healing. What is this mentality that we must be at a certain place at a certain time in a certain frame of mind with a certain group doing a certain thing and not doing other things before God will make himself known to us or we can come before him? I will pray while walking, driving, eating, laughing, crying, shopping, in a movie, with friends, alone, on the phone, in the shower, in the middle of a noisy bar, during a conversation, half-asleep, while reading, while watching television, while in the bathroom, and while cleaning the toilet. Either Jesus is over all our lives or we have religated him to compartments of our own making. When I look at the life of Jesus, much of what he did involved everyday life with ordinary people doing everyday stuff. He was so present and willing to respond in every situation. The model of having spiritual activities mostly happen in a special holy place is an Old Testament concept that Jesus expanded on and fulfilled when he came - we are the place where God wants to dwell.
We were having a church picnic yesterday and I believe I learned more life lessons in the pool (yes, I am still on a quest to perfect my swimming skills enough to be able to breathe and stay afloat at the same time) than I have in my Bible reading for the last few weeks. There is something about my willingness to learn and try and try again that God has told me he finds attractive.
There is another separation, a separation from others I feel sometimes that aches like a cancer in my soul. Tonight is one of those nights. I don't quite know what it is, but I know it is probably a symptom of separating some part of me from him. When I am drained and feeling neglected, spent on serving and smiling, some part of me just wants to be showered with gratitude, affection, and acknowledgement of my value. I don't want to be sitting here alone at the computer drinking a cold cup of tea, wondering what my problem is and why I can't give and give and give without reaching that point where it becomes a chore.
God help me, I need to learn to breathe in his life while I keep on moving forward in this pool of life. I am out of oxygen all too often and cannot keep myself above water.
This is a picture of a rock in my front yard.