The God Obstacle

Beloved,
God stands in your path, as you march around the mountain, picking flowers as you go, drinking coffee and eating cake.
All you see is an obstacle as you quickly glance ahead, so you carry on chatting, or reading, or flicking through your ipad and move to the left a little to navigate it.
You have done this a few times, and then carried on.
But this time the obstacle is going to move to the left, or the right with you.
As you carry on your conversation with your life you are surprised subconciously that the obstacle is still there, so you keep walking left to move around it as there has always been a way around before.
Suddenly the mountain is before you and you can go left no more, as you turn you subconciously think that surely you can go forward round the mountain again now, but no, the obstacle is still there.  You stand a little, not really engaging with this, conversing with your slowly devolving life, until you begin to feel a little uncomfortable, a little less sure.  Suddenly you are acutely aware of the deep waters below all the froth and the bubbles you have been doggy paddling in for so long.  Your ipad, your phone, your life becomes quiet, and suddenly you hear it… this deep rumbling call to look up.
So you do, …

Advertisements

Deep calling to Deep

Brennan Manning calls it the “furious longing of God”. And I think that is what I feel, this deep within us calling to the deep of God because he is furiously longing for that union with us that calls us higher up and farther in.
When I move out of myself and into him, a movement that is internal, I find him there. This deep calling to deep, this sense of utter rest and peace and calm and solid secure foundation bedrock of life.
When we visit and start talking there is such a sense of union, of being. When we dive down into the rich water of his life in us.
We leave the shallows, the bubbles and froth of the surf, and dive down deep into the still quiet pool of his voice.
There is a place of infinite wonder below the surface of our lives, below the surface of our Journey

 

The desert and the spring

There is a state of walking this Christian life that is desert like. It is that place that kept the Jews in the wilderness for 40 years. Where they listened to each other, and grumbled and moaned and griped and nothing was good enough. God sent manna, God sent quail, God sent water, but nothing brought gratitude out of their hearts.

This is not because they didnt know God, they had a mountain of fire and smoke, they had miracles galore but what they didnt have was a still small voice.

So they ate dust, dirt, sand… their grumbling words, their mean spiritedness sat like sand on their lips and on their tongues.

They listened to each other not to that still small voice. They were so loud in each others ears that they drowned out any other voice.

We today are so loud in each others ears that we miss the crystal clear life giving water of God, of our Father leading us. We seek our own opinions and others far above and beyond Gods. It is easier to abdicate the throne of our Queen of hearts listening to her King to grovel in the sand with others, than to wait and rest and learn the new walk of the Kingdom. Only in desperate times do we suddenly put our ear to the ground to hear him and the underground spring bursts forth.

We are not in this only for the desperate times. Father longs for us to walk with our hearts joined as one to His, listening in an attentive state ALL the time. Yes it is possible. It is possible to lovingly listen to those who care, but to not let those voices weigh in over and above that voice that is the high call of God, the stream that bubbles underground but longs to burst out and flood the desert.

Fear keeps us locked into the myriad voices that surround us, so much so that we have become used to the sand, it almost tastes like water sometimes. Meanwhile we are becoming dessicated, dried out, husks of our former or possible true selves. And our Queen of hearts is dressed in rags and living like a pauper while super tramp the imposter stomps around our palace throwing his weight around.

Take a moment and back away, empty out all that is in your mouth, let go of all that is upon you and surrounding you, take an hour, a day, and wait and listen, you will hear that tumbling underground river, give it time and keep listening it will grow louder and break out and flood the desert, and your mouth washing away the sand and dirt you have lived on.

It is not easy to get there, because you not only have to stop but you have to wait in the stopping, you have to listen and you have to hang in there. Patience in the waiting, trusting that as you wait, your King is knocking down walls to get to you. Leaping on the high places, pushing over mountains, bringing that cascading river from the depths of your earth, up and out of your mouth, over you through you and filling your desert with the life giving water you so desperately have been dreaming of. and drenching those around you in the overflow.

But you have to wait, he has to break through all the crud and crap of years like sediment in a kettle in a hard water area that has never been cleaned. The “cares of this world” creep up on us so subtly, we think “We have to pay for this, we have to have that, we have to provide this”

This is my experience of a God who answers, who is mystery and yet who is a wide open book for us to walk into every page and live with, in and through.

 

Peace

The only place I have truly felt at peace, at home, was sitting on the veranda of one of the rondavels at Skukuza rest camp in the Kruger national park  It was the very early morning, quiet of everything but the chorus of natural life surrounding me.  An intense feeling of utter rightness and rest came upon me.  Of being exactly where my soul wanted to be, and at total peace.  Of having no where to go or to hurry to but being totally present to the utter beauty of that moment, as if it could last forever.  If I die before Jesus comes back, I want my ashes scattered in Kruger, in one of the wildest places where there is no other sound but the bush and its creatures.

I wonder if it is possible in this world to carry that sense of peace, that utter presentness with you, in any and all situations?  Is it only possible for profound moments like that, or can you really walk through your daily mundane, hurryful existence at peace and rest, with a sense of being joined to all that is natural and beautiful and created by the God of infinite beauty and belovedness?

If we are abiding in the vine, and live in a conscious expression of that, would that not be possible?  Did Jesus live like that?

Actually no, I dont see the Garden or the beatings or the cross as  particularly peaceful or restful experiences.  He was absolutely in the moment, but I can’t imagine they were profoundly peaceful or restful times; “My God My God why have you forsaken me?”

Maybe the best we can be is present to the moment, alive to God and present to the moment.  So we never miss those profound moment of Joy, but also never skirt those overwhelming moments of pain or sadness either.  For only then perhaps are we fully human and yet also fully filled to the measure of all the fullness of God (Eph 3)

Being, in stillness

I was reading 1Kings 19:11 to 13, and as I am learning about coming to a stop and it is a wonderful learning, had delight in digging into this..

Ki 19:11 ” And he said, Go out and stand on the mountain before Jehovah. And, behold, Jehovah passed by, and a great and strong wind tearing the mountains and breaking the rocks in bits before Jehovah! Jehovah was not in the wind. And after the wind was an earthquake, but Jehovah was not in the earthquake.
1Ki 19:12 And after the earthquake was a fire, but Jehovah was not in the fire; and after the fire came a sound of gentle stillness and a still, small voice
1Ki 19:13 And it happened when Elijah heard, he wrapped his face in his robe and went out and stood at the cave opening; and, behold, a voice came to him, and it said, What are you doing here, Elijah? ”

You stand on the Mountain before me, and you have been excited by the great strong wind
You jump for joy as it tears the mountains and breaks the rocks in bits before me.
You gaze around to see who is witnessing what your God is able to do, but no one is looking.
Because I am not in the wind.
You are wide eyed in awe as the earthquake rocks the ground and again you search around to see who is witnessing what I can do,
but no one is aware, because I am not in the Earthquake
And then a fire that glows white hot, again no one notices, for I am not in the fire.
As you sit bewildered, there comes a stillness and a still small voice, and you know that God is here and you will be still and know, for I am in the stillness, it is my voice you hear in the quiet..
and suddenly all eyes are on you, the bride, for I am in the stillness, I am in the still small voice and I ask “What are you doing here….?”

This is not a damning question, “What ARE you DOING here ?!!” as if God wonders what on earth are we doing on this spot!!
But a question that asks us to dig deep and examine our hearts, to stand at the entrance to this place of quiet and discover why each of us is here,
To be at the entrance to this stillness and find our place in it .
This is a question to help us discover our place in this, to hear God’s still small voice to ME, to YOU in this stillness.
To pull us aside from the wind, the earthquake and the fire so we can hear the heartbeat of God in the stillness of silence.
This is a question he is going to ask us all. TO give us each the call to go deep and hear his still small voice at the entrance to this stillness so that we each find our unique place in this new yet ancient journey together with him.