...Or in this case, it was downright brrrr-isk for my blood and for this mild climate place. But i was on a mission. The book our bible study group is studying is called "Experiencing God" by somebody Blackaby, i think. Anyway, it's been pretty cool. It has lots of things to make a person go "hmmm..." One day last week there was a special assignment to be done. Along the lines of Adam and Eve walking with God in the cool of the day, we were to spend 30 minutes walking and talking to God in some place nature-y. In Castro Valley we have a lovely hilly place called Greenridge Park, so i went there.
Now, there are lots of things i can do for 30 minutes: read a book, drink coffee, chat with a friend, use the elliptical, even just sit and stare dumbly at my toes. But spend 30 minutes concentrating on talking with God? Yikes. A daunting thought.
But, like i said, i was on a mission. So i shoved my hands deep into my pockets for warmth and started walking. How to even start this?
At Greenridge Park there are big trees, lots of birds, and at some times of the year there are even rabbits. As i walked i looked at the trees and thought, okay, what would it be like to just hang out with God in a garden in the cool of the day? What would that even feel like? If it were at day's end, after a nice warm day, the coolness would make me feel a little happy-lazy, and i'd probably just be in the mood for some comfortable conversation with someone close to me. So, okay, think of this walking with God thing as a comfortable conversation. Good. i can do that.
Here i must insert something that will seem irrelevant, but trust me, it will tie in. On the weekend before, Dean and i had watched TLC's "What Not to Wear," a show that i am admittedly hooked on. i've gotta love anybody who thinks you should dress for the body you have. i've dressed in mourning over the years for the body i no longer have, and obsessed over the body i wish i had (but am apparently unwilling to work for.) ANYway, the person being taught to dress for her rather adorable little 20 year old body was a girl named Megan Slankard. She's from Tracy California, not far from here, and is a musician. She writes her own songs and plays a mean guitar, and has a great voice. Back in the day i loved playing guitar and singing, so i really enjoyed watching her on the show. Now here is where this ties back in-- (i know, that already looked like the part that somehow tied in, right?) Being young and therefore allowably angst ridden, of course some of the songs would be about love gone bad. Now remember this, before you judge me, she is really good at catchy lines and catchy tunes. So i've had one of her songs stuck in my head for days. The lyrics go, "it's too bad you saw me naked too bad i love you don't mean anything ever again." So what of course has been stuck in my head? "It's too bad you saw me naked" keeps replaying.
So i'm trying to have this walking-with-God-in-the-CHILL-of-the-day experience, trying to focus, and "It's too bad you saw me naked" is playing in my head. Now imagine you are standing in front of the Queen of England, and you just burst out singing that. i was inwardly cringing and thinking "sorry sorry!" to God. But then another thought came in--well, of course God has already seen me naked, not just physically, but emotionally, mentally-- He's seen me in all the nakedly raw times of my life when i thought i'd never feel right again: when i was going through the miscarriages, when my kids or my husband were struggling and i felt helpless to "fix" it, when i came face to face with the pain that came after my mother's death. He has seen me in the nakedness of all those moments, and He has been walking with me, even when i was so tied up in the pain of it i didn't see Him.
And then i thought, naked--when God walked with Adam and Eve in the cool of the day, they were naked. And why weren't they ashamed? They were an open book to God, they had nothing to hide. They were glad to walk and talk about every little thing. No secrets. No worrying. It wasn't until they decided to "fix" their lives their own way that they became ashamed of their nakedness.
That is something i strive for--that genuineness that means there is nothing to hide from God, or from anyone, really. OH! i get it--that song in my head, something i saw as an "interruption" in my walk that day with God, was part of the conversation. Ah.
Just so you know, and won't send me for an extended stay at the local Hilton Psychiatric, i'm not talking about audible voices here. There was no booming voice from the clouds, no talking tree or squirrel, but i heard Him all the same. i'm usually too caught up in trying to "fix" my own life/relationships/health/finances/etc to stop and have a conversation with God. But it looks like that's something i'm going to do more often.