Two Empty Chairs

November 13, 2006

the two of us #1Imagine yourself in a room with two empty chairs.  It doesn’t have to be a creepy room, just a room with two chairs. It could even be outside. Wherever you imagine your chairs, there is no one else around. You take a seat. Then, through a door or a clearing or a path on the beach, God walks up. He doesn’t say anything, just smiles and takes the other seat because, hey, it’s the only chair around. He sits facing you, silent. You’re a bit curious because His expression is a bit difficult to read. How would you feel in this moment? Safe? Comfortable? Afraid? Anxious? Would you try to guess what He was thinking? What would you think?

two red chairsRecently, I was in a room with seven other people. We were discussing God and how we feel in relationship to Him. As the conversation went on I became aware that two of the people in the room felt quite comfortable with God. They spoke of Him as someone whom they knew and loved. They talked about being aware of His presence and including them in their every moments. Listening to them, I realized that if they were in this room with God they would feel quite comfortable. They would feel at ease. I voiced that I felt quite differently. When I imagine myself in this room I am desperately insecure. I would be so concerned at what my God was thinking of me. I would doubt my every move and with each moment I would lose confidence in His desire to be with me. I might even rationalize that He is only there because He has to be. I would figure that I was upsetting Him and rack my brain for things that I think please Him. Perhaps I should read my bible. Maybe He has come to tell me that I don’t do it enough. Maybe He wants to tell me that He is disappointed in me. I would get all of this from Him simply sitting down and not saying anything. As I shared this my kind professor, who was one of the ones comfortable with God, spoke truth into my life. The kind of truth that cannot be ignored. Being the kind of person that he is, he spoke it in a question. He asked, “What would it be like if you were completely convinced that God was in love with you?” Actually, I’m not sure if that’s the exact wording but you get the gist. I knew immediately that things would be unbelievably different. If I was in a room with a God who I knew was madly in love with me and enjoyed being with me I would feel so safe. I would feel so secure. I would no longer be so uncomfortable.

Room for twoNow I wonder why I still cannot get this basic truth. In my mind I am convinced that God is certainly much happier with others who seem more spiritual. You know who I mean, the kind of people who get up in the wee hours of the morning to pray and read the bible. The kind of people who never miss one of their apointments with God. Through this conversation and others I’ve had recently I’m beginning to wonder where I get these ideas. I’m beginning to think that God is much more patient with us than I make Him out to be. So, here I am. I’m trying to get more comfortable in my own skin. I’m trying to figure out what my relationship with God could look like, not what I think it should look like. I’m trying to allow God to meet me where I am, not where I think I should be. We’ll see if I too could sit across from my God in complete comfort and ease.

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