I woke up at 2:30am....couldn't get to sleep (happens way to often these days - This time, it was different. My heart seems unsettled....I pondered over "what was" and how things are now.......I remember the days of praying together with a special group of ladies and having spiritual encouragement from each other. Sometimes to the point of wanting to return to those days which immobilizes me..does this make sense? Living in the past....that's it! I am afraid that I have not really "moved" when I moved from my hometown....but have longed for my former days. So I have been searching to move forward, but just cannot get a grip on it.....until I went through my "library" of books, finding nothing that grabbed me, then I came across one of Joshua's seminary books - yes, I said seminary books......and I discovered not all are cemetery books:) I pulled this book out of the shelf: Sacred Rhythms by Ruth Haley Barton. I only got as far as the introductory (read it twice as it is worth reading twice) - here are some of the words I highlighted that sure make sense to me, more sense than anything I have read in a long time:
Spiritual transformation is something outside the range of normal human activity and understanding that can be grasped only through divine revelation and brought about by divine activity. I cannot transform myself, or anyone else for that matter. What I can do is create the conditions in which spiritual transformation can take place, by developing and maintaining a rhythm of spiritual practices that keep me open and available to God.
The journey begins as we learn to pay attention to our desire in God's presence, allowing our desire to become the impetus for deepening our spiritual journey. Discover what it is that you really want. It is not until after we have settled into our desires and named them in God's presence that are ready to be guided into the spiritual practices that will open us to receive what our heart is longing for.
A spiritual friendship is a relationship that is focused intentionally on our relationship with God as viewed through the lens of desire. With such a friend we share the deepest desire of our heart, so that we can support one another in arranging our lives in ways that are congruent with what our hearts want most. Together we reverence the ways God is meeting us in the context of the spiritual practices that help us to seek him.
Me and God....we have been traveling on a long journey that has not been easy...I miss my prayer friends......my feet hurt from all of the rocks I have stumbled on......my heart hurts from all the pain I have suffered......but my soul is satisfied because I know the One who has transformed me in the midst of all the chaos! The race is still on and I am pressing forward with a renewed sense of desire to "get on with it".....