AS SOMEONE WHO finds comfort in the routine, I have to keep reminding myself that there’s a fine line between a groove and a rut. That’s especially true when it comes to the spiritual disciplines I try to follow; they are supposed to be a skeleton that makes it possible for me to move through the world, not a straitjacket that confines me.
To me, making some daily time to just be with God seems like a no-brainer. No, there’s no requirement, but I don’t think you can get to know someone without spending any time with them. And, frankly, I don’t think anyone is “too busy” to find just 10, or even five, minutes—they just have misplaced priorities. After all, we are talking about the sovereign Creator of the universe.
Mornings work well for me, too. Again, no hard-and-fast rule here, but I find starting the day with God is both a statement to myself and the universe—He comes first—and practical: I get to call on His help for all that is coming that day. And, hey, dawn devotionals worked for Jesus and King David, so who am I to argue?
So, feeling I was in a bit of a groove, I was surprised recently to read the Genesis 3 passage about God walking in the Garden of Eden with Adam, and find myself thinking, “Maybe I should do that too.” (Except for the naked part: might take some explaining to the HOA.)
When I read a commentary on that exact passage in a random devotional book the following day, I took it as a nudge.
Thus my new walks around the neighborhood. On one of them, I whispered, “I like this, just You and me.” While no audible voice sounded, I believe God whispered back, “Us too.”
I won’t pretend I have noticed any great breakthrough since these rambles began. Sometimes you just have to keep at things for a while. But taking our dog, Millie, along on occasions has helped provide parallel life lessons.
We’ll be ambling along together happily, and all of a sudden she’s lurching off to the side, distracted by something. Then we’ll be back in step for a while before she starts straining ahead, and I have to tug gently on the leash and say, “Close.” And then we’ll need to pause while she—to be polite—lets out what she doesn’t need to be carrying around anymore.
I didn’t expect my Doodle to teach me so much.
Photo by r.nial.bradshaw on Foter.com/CC BY