Several weeks ago I found a copy of Brother Lawrence's The Practice of the Presence of God at a book sale. A friend had recommended it last summer, so I was on the lookout. That said, I was also a bit scared to find it. And even more scared to read it.
Because I knew it would require something of me.
To practice the presence of God -- the moment by moment awareness of the Spirit -- as much as I desired it, I knew I couldn't approach it like some sort of new hobby. Not like knitting or canning or painting, to be picked up one day and cast aside the next with no serious ramifications.
To practice the presence of the Almighty would be a commitment. Once I acknowledged it, I would fall into one of two camps: I would either be listening to God . . . or not. I would either be bowed in His presence . . . or not. That's what scared me.
In all this fear, however, I forgot one very important truth: God wants me to sense His presence. He desires it so very deeply that I can scarcely fathom His longing for me. He's not elusive. He's not unapproachable. He's not tricky or capricious or moody.
He's perfect. And He wants me.
I'm starting to understand this because even in my halting, pathetic little baby steps to try and live each moment in His presence, I find that my days are filled with gentle reminders.
I see hints of His love, hints of His beauty in the smallest things. The graceful curve of my baby's neck . . . the joy in my daughter's thirst for life . . . the intricate workings of my son's mind . . . the contagious laughter of my lively boy . . . the deep, steady gaze in my husband's eye . . . it's all there.
It all points back to Him.
So maybe I'm in His presence after all . . . . What if this practicing, this awareness, is simply an opening of the eyes? A tilting of the ear? A realization of what's really, truly going right in the midst of this whirl of life, whether we acknowledge it or not?
I believe that it is. And my desire is to practice it.