Thursday, July 1, 2010

On Keeping Company

We were talking about "keeping company with God" in our Bible study last night, about Philip Yancy's idea that ultimately prayer involves just two things -- letting God know who we are and learning who God is.  We talked about developing our relationship with Him, honestly telling Him what is in our hearts, even though He already knows, and coming to know His heart as well.

Dara shared a story.  A few years ago she and her best friend traveled for a time in Italy.  One day they were sitting in a sidewalk cafe, enjoying coffee and a pastry.  "We were already best friends and we'd been traveling together for a couple of weeks, so there wasn't so much to share with each other."  While she and her friend sat together with long periods of silence, the people around -- a couple, two women friends, a couple of elderly gentlemen -- talked and talked.  They talked for two or three hours.  What in the world did they have to talk about for such a long time, she wondered.

After a quiet time between Dara and her friend, she said, "Why don't we share the thoughts that come to our minds?"  That simple suggestion had a profound impact on their friendship.  They began to talk, to chat about things that popped into their heads, their interests and tastes, and to share their more intimate thoughts. They learned things about one another that they had never known, even as best friends.  And they learned the secret to the Italian friendships she saw around her at the cafe that day.

They took a step toward a deeper level of trust in their relationship. She became comfortable with asking her friend what she saw in Dara that might stand in the way of her being a good wife to TJ (whom she later married), and her friend also asked similar questions.  Their friendship deepened and they continue as best friends today.

Granted, nobody wants to know everything that enters the head of another person, but what would happen if we shared more of ourselves with the people we care about?  More thoughts, whether deep or superfluous.  More questions.  More dreams and fears.

Isn't that also the kind of relationship that the Lord desires to have with us?  Is today the day that we might begin to open up more with Him?

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