1. God is with me where my body is.
I am a person who is very inclined to living in their imagination. Throughout many seasons of unhealth, I have often used my imagination for escapist purposes, detaching from reality as an act of resignation from present struggles or situations. It is only a recent thing where in my relationship with God we’re really addressing this issue. I had somewhat of a revelation on this this morning when I was complaining to God in prayer about not wanting to accept reality and struggling with accepting my being trapped in this finite body:
I don’t want to be physically present. I’m really struggling to accept reality – to love it too. I’m trying to transcend myself, to find you in another space. I don’t want to be here. But you’re here Lord. Yes, I can find you in my past. I can trust you’re in my future. I can wonder about you in my daydreams. But really, I’m so finite. I can only meet with you in the present – where I am today. You’re with me where my body is.
2. I am a body.
I often think about this poem that I wrote back in April. I wrote it at the start of becoming aware that my formation into the likeness of Christ takes place in my body – not just in my emotions/feelings (aka the spaces where I am the most comfortable and familiar in connecting with God; which is where I have spent probably 90% of my existence).
Dallas Willard’s book, Renovation of the Heart, helped me to name and understand the many dimensions of the human self – mind (thought/feeling), body, spirit (will/heart), community, and soul. God made me containing all of these spaces, and I believe that each broken space is undergoing transformation. God reaches into each space of my being and allows me to experience intimacy with Him. I have access to God in more parts of me than just my feelings, and as someone who desires balance in all aspects of life, I am seeking a renovation of my whole self into His likeness. This is work that requires me to be actively in touch with all of those parts of my being, including my body.
Anyway, this is a poem that I wrote about finding God outside of my feelings:
From a Morning Walk
You’ve started taking walks at six a.m.
to remind yourself that you are a body.
The air is so cold,
but the birds are singing again
and lawns are flowering now.
The streets are quiet;
you like to notice whose lights are on this early,
wonder who’s awake to pray.
It’s all an effort to find God outside
of your feelings.
So you look for him in the naked branches,
try to meet his gaze in the sunrise.