Friday, April 17, 2015

Bringing God with me

Dear God,
This is Kelley.

I'm about to accept a job, Lord, with a home-improvement company. I'll be a cashier, a greeter, a cleaner- and straighten-upper. I'll answer questions and just be a nice presence. And I'm nervous, Lord. I haven't done such a thing since I was 16. I've applied to similar things and grander things, but nothing has come through. But this one came through very quickly. I wonder if You're in it, Lord.

I don't want this to take away from the things I know You want me to do. We do need the money; I know it's not much, but it's some. I'll just watch tv less to make up for lost time for writing. And, if I can develop a discipline for writing in the evening, that will help, depending on the time I'm asked to work.

I've asked You to intervene with all I do in order to make sure Your will comes about. So, Lord, I say yes to this, and I place my trust in You. I want to look forward to it and not feel like I'm pulling time away from "what I should be doing." I love home-improvement things -- plants, tools, and the smell of wood! I won't be as available to those I love, but that's okay.

Your will is weird, Lord. Bless me please, and bless my family. May I bring You in any way I can to this job and these people. Amen.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Looking forward to God

Dear God,
This is Kelley.

Up to now, Lord, it's just been me and You. I've a way with You, a way I'm relatively comfortable with it. But now I am to let others in, others who will ask questions of me, and I'm not sure just what You want known. How much of You and me do I let them see?

I've been bitten, You know. And I have shared, but with no known consequences. Did it do any good? Does it do any good? Maybe to those with deep wounds it will say healing can come, but how many of us are out there?

I guess I believe there are a lot of us out there. We put on good shows. And, if we have You, it is not a show so much as it is an ability to set our wounds aside and let You take over. And You do, and it is nice, relieving, invigorating, intoxicating even.

But then You draw back and the dis-ease returns, the symptoms and signs of woundedness, the weakness, and the all the sundry habits that woundedness leaves in its wake return. I get mad at You for retreating, even though I know You're making time for healing. Healing is hard, Lord, and it is long, arduously long.

Will I be whole? It seems You can do a lot with wounded people. We dance quite well because we have learned to let You lead. It's that or us messing up in grand style. Oh, I know what that feels like too!

You are in this, I know. I look forward to watching You, hearing You. I look forward to sensing Your movements. I look forward to You, Lord.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Receiving God within us

Dear God,
This is Kelley.

I'm here at church an hour before the Mass begins. And my introvert self, like always, is just thinking of what I can do once I get home, all by myself. But Gloria sees me and we just talked for ten minutes. She dragged me out of myself and I feel good, opened, ready to greet other people. It's amazing what You do with us when You have us rub up against one another, Lord.

We are made for one another, even the introverts among us. We can't grow without one another. We can't become the people You want us to become. And that brings me to another question, Lord, a question I want to be able to have good, ready answers for -- why should we want to become the people You call us to become?

I told the kids yesterday that the same You who healed, who cast out demons, who walked on water, who calmed storms, who raised from the dead, this same You we take into our very bodies each Sunday. We take, we receive Your presence within us. Just what does that do within us, Lord? Just what can that do? And how is it that we just go on without really pondering this question, as a lot of us do because we're so preoccupied with "earthly" things?

Are we afraid to see what Your presence within us can really do? Are we afraid You'll ask us to be another Jeremiah? Might we fear our focus on ourselves and our desire for comfortable, fun lives will fall into question? Have we no grasp of the benefits of paying attention to You within us?

"Come up here," You tell us in Revelation. I believe this is an invitation to us for each day: strive to live by putting on Your mind, walking on our tiptoes; yes, paying attention to Your Spirit's movement within us, which we nurture each time we receive Communion. Oh, my, Lord, what could we become?

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Of dreams and Your Spirit, Lord!

Dear God,
This is Kelley.

What do You do with our dreams, Lord? I know You sometimes speak through them, but what about the ones that leave us feeling disturbed? What about the ones that seem confused and not at all at ease? We wake up and carry the confusion, question, dis-ease into our morning -- what is the purpose here, Lord?

Many would say to ignore it -- "don't take yourself too seriously." Oh, how I hate that statement. It can be useful sometimes, but, I think, most of the time, it is used by those who are trying their best to deal with their issues by ignoring their issues.

Our issues represent what stands in between You and us. You'll not have us go around them. And You've put those issues in between us because our facing them and dealing well with them is the very thing that will allow us to see You so very well.

Yes, I do believe it works that way. I've seen it work that way. I've experienced the tremendous connection with You that waits there when our issues are faced, dealt with, broken open -- and You are found there!

So, Lord, back to these disturbing and rather haunting dreams -- what are we to do with them? Write them down? Bring their details to You in prayer? Lay them at Your feet and just trust that in doing so, in leaving them with You, You will highlight anything in them that we need to pay attention to. Your Spirit works with them and will show us what we need to see.

So, Lord, I lay this one at Your feet. I lay with it the turmoil and unrest it caused. I give it to You, and I wait here for Your grace to strengthen me so that I can be present in this day without anxiety.

We are indeed "fearfully and wonderfully made" (Psalm 139:14). May we learn to read ourselves in Your light so that we do not miss Your Spirit's work!