Monday, May 30, 2011

Repost: Present

The reason we don't sense God's being present in any given moment is because we're not present in most moments. ~Jeff Rogers (comment at Rebecca Ramsey's blog)
This time of year makes me think of vacations. And when I start to think about vacations, I'm immediately taken to a field in Vermont with my parents and sisters.

60 minutes of Night Skyphoto © 2009 Jim Sher | more info (via: Wylio)We had a pretty low-key day. We pulled into a camp ground that was a bit off the beaten path. It was incredibly quiet, which was rare in the middle of the summer vacation season. We built a fire, made some mountain pies, played at the arcade a little bit. Nothing special. Nothing very "vacationy." It was just a quiet night.

I'm not sure what led us to the field that night. But somehow we all ended up sitting around a picnic table in a huge open field with nothing but the night sky above us. Normally a loquacious family, I don't remember much conversation in that moment. Just awe.

It's not like I'd never seen stars before. Our home was in the country and there wasn't a lot of light pollution. There weren't even a lot of trees or houses around to obstruct our view back then. So what was different on this night?

I think the quote at the top of the post says it all. We were present. All of us. We sat there together in that moment. We gazed upon the magnificence of the starry sky together in that moment. We contemplated our own place in the world together in that moment. And we all sought God together in that moment.

And he met us there.

I think the quote holds true for so many relationships. We don't really experience true closeness with people because we're too distracted to really engage. We're so busy that our mind is already on the next thing that we have to do while we're talking to someone. We might be sitting there together, but we're not participating in the relationship. We're not present.

However, sometimes we are present. We fully immerse ourselves into the moment. We truly listen. We fully engage all of our senses. And those can be some of the most life-transforming moments we have.

For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there I am in the midst of them. (Matthew 18:20)

Can you remember a time when you were fully present in a moment? What happened? What are things that hinder you from being fully present?


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