As a believer in Jesus Christ, I seek to know the God who created me. For me, it’s not a religion, which is based on earning Heaven. It’s a relationship, in which I share my life with a higher being, not merely supplicate him with actions and litanies.
Since I’m human and the God I have faith in is not now currently human (though that discussion is worth another blog), learning to connect isn’t always easy. Reading the Bible is vital, as in faith I trust that its many authors were inspired by the Holy Spirit. This concept is reinforced by how the Bible supports itself and its own arguments despite its many authors and styles. I’ve heard from and read some very interesting studies by scholars, religious and non-religious alike, who discuss the surprisingly and comprehensively linear nature of Biblical cannon, reinforced and rounded by agreeing books in the codex.
But back to my point. Biblical discussion is another thing entirely.
I try to find a way to make communication with God consistent, as that can help improve quality. Sometimes it does feel like pulling my own teeth to sit still every morning when I could get rolling on projects, homework or the like. And every night before I go to bed, I try to sit and pray, but I may have already stayed up late and just want to dive headlong into sleep. And while a quiet time is not necessary for God to love me, if I want to make my life about more than myself, I must dedicate that time to whom I hold most valuable in this universe, and while that is often me more than it should be, I try to make it the God of my heart.
Like any relationship, that takes commitment. It takes choosing to communicate when I’d rather sit in front of the tube. It takes humbling myself to say: I don’t feel like talking to you God, but I’m going to sit my happy bottom down right here and try not to be distracted by people skateboarding in the street outside. (I’m in Cali, it’s what they do.)
I’ve discovered that while there is no set or uniform way for anyone to pursue a relationship with God, I can focus best when I’m sitting cross-legged on the floor. Now, there is no mystical benefit to doing this; no supplicatory rule in any cannon about sitting in a particular place in a particular position to best connect with the spirit world. This isn’t about exactly how I do it, insamuch that I can’t sit in a real comfortable spot.
I’ve prayed reclining on a couch, sitting in a comfy chair, even lying down in bed half-asleep, but I’ll tell you that I don’t focus as well as when I’m just sitting indian-style on the carpet. And it’s about putting my own body into a position that isn’t associated with reclining, but paying attention. It doesn’t mean that when I’m talking with a friend about God, or I’m a Bible study, that when it’s prayer time, I hop down onto the floor.
I’m putting myself into a position in which I am removed from the common distractions of life. When I’m sitting on a couch, I’m there to relax, not work. When I’m in a big comfy chair, I’m probably there to read fiction or politics. If I’m lying in bed, I’m there to sleep.
But when I want to focus on something outside the realm of daily life, I’ve found no better place than sitting on a partially comfortable floor away from other comforts and distractions. It doesn’t mean I’m free from distractions, it just means I’m moving out of my comfort zone. I’ve created a spot available in any room of any home I may stay in that is still different from the common trappings of life.
Why am I writing an entire blog about where I sit when I pray in the morning and at night? To gloat? Certainly not. I’m not changing people’s lives by sitting on the floor. God’s not saving souls while I’m indian-style on the carpet. Nothing to boast about. I’m still a distracted creative trying to focus on the world of the spirit while firmly not quite somewhat in there.
I’m writing this post because if you want to find God, remember that He’s not a Cracker Jack toy. If you want something with real depth, it will require dedication on your part. You can try and keep God as something you only pull out when you want a comfort pillow or a feel-good moment on Easter Sunday, and He will have as much impact as either. If you’d like to see God change from a tear-drop trickle to an unstoppable river, it’s going to take time and elbow grease. And sitting on the floor may not be the way for you, and I’m not advocating a new fad of praying on the floor.
You won’t fix yourself enough to earn God. Won’t happen, and isn’t the point. If you want a real, well-rounded relationship with God, it will take learning what He believes and how he thinks, creating a form of communication that helps you share life together, which is what he wants to do. He wants to share your life with you, to support you as you learn and grow and to share in your joys and triumphs. Take the time to build an understanding of who He is through reading his word, and by communicating with him in prayer.
I’m not the expert on knowing God’s mind. I’m still learning the Bible and I’m still learning to pray, but I’m engaged, and I encourage those of you interested to do the same. Keep in mind that God isn’t concerned with your comfort, he’s focused on your soul, and that might mean some pretty uncomfortable times, but they are always for your benefit. So learn how to embrace discomfort, not because it’s holy, but because life isn’t easy and it isn’t about you. And don’t fret, God’s an expert and helping you see just that.
Good night, and God bless.