Tuesday, August 9, 2011

It's that simple!

I finished my second book for Joe the other day, now I need to write my paper. This one was called The Art of Christian Listening and one of the cool things that I got out of this book was how simple things are and how complex we make them. Take prayer for example, the first principle of prayer is to be yourself. How simple is that? We have messed it up by making it complex. I think we get the part about the prayer of petition, but when it comes to something a little deeper like mediation or contemplation, we just don't know how to begin. It comes down to false ideas I think. We may think we have to make something beautiful for God. That you will think good and holy thoughts. You will say things that are pleasing to God, you will give God this gift. To me, this wears me out! Know why? I don't have good and holy thoughts all the time, in fact, not most of the time. I mean really, if I were to sit down and be with God and have good thoughts, do you know how hard this would be? Now I can think about God the creator and look out into the world that He has made for us and have good thoughts! In fact, I can get lost in the beauty that is the world and the small details that He made just for us! But to sit down and close my eyes and have good thoughts...I end up with a list of what needs to be done, how much I haven't gotten done this day and it might have something to do with wasting my time sitting here trying to have beautiful thoughts! I just don't think that's what God is after, I know it's not what I'm after!

Here's how I see it, it's like any other relationship you have, it's a conversation! When you just be yourself and let it happen, your freed up. You don't do all the talking in your friendships do you? If you do, I don't think it's much of a friendship. When I'm talking with God, I also take time to be quite, so He can tell me stuff too. When I'm having a hard time with staying focused, I tell him;
God! I'm having a real hard time focusing right now!
Would you just breathe.
Is that it? You just want me to breathe? What about the rest of my life? What grand thing can I do for you and mankind?
Breathing is something your going to have to do for the rest of your life you know? Oh, look!
That's when I see the squirrel or the butterfly come into the picture and I just be still and watch. It's really that simple, that natural. From this comes the adoration, the praise and the prayer of a grateful heart! Hart says it this way Prayer is rather being yourself before God, coming as you are, dialoging with him from your present situation, not putting on a face and manufacturing appropriate thoughts and feelings, but being yourself and working with the thoughts and feelings that are there.      

For me, this is the easiest way to do it, cuz as some of you know I have no filter! God wants me to be with Him now, not when I figure it all out and have it shined up pretty. He wants to hear from me as I am! Heck, He might even want to have something to do with getting you all shined up, why don't you ask Him and see what He says!

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