Contemplation

This post is fifth in a sporadic series on a book I’m reading that is changing my life: God in the Yard, by Laura Barkat. This is not a book review, per se, but perhaps a book invitation…
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I’ve ‘marked out a temple’ (She said that’s one meaning of the word ‘to contemplate’.)

I’ve said, “Here I will worship God inside invisible walls with a view to His Creation.”

I’m looking and listening for Him because I’m tired of paying attention to lies–the lies that say, ‘you have to be DOING something all the time.’

Why is it a lie?

Because God did it all in His creation.  And it was good (I believe He repeated that point more than once.) And He said it was finished again when Jesus died.

And then he said it was really done when Jesus rose from the dead.

So I’m sitting out in the yard, looking at nature. 

Chapter Three’s ‘And you?’ question prompt from the book begins, “Words communicate differently than nature because….”

“….words take planning, prior thought, a particular form,” I write.
My thoughts continue. 

“Nature (i.e. God’s creation) just IS.
We need only observe it and ask the Creator about it.
(Why do we always want to explain things?)
There is no explaining it apart from God.”


‘And you?’ question again. “I think my inner landscape is crucial to contemplation because….I cannot see the dark things Jesus has set me free from without His light shining on them.”

LL Barkat writes of a “childhood past that’s also somewhat dark.  In other words I bring a shadowy inner landscape that may be crucial to the contemplation process.” (p.26).

I’ve scribbled in the margins of my book, 
“There wouldn’t BE any shadows if there was no light.”


When Jesus came announcing to the Pharisees (John Chapter 8) “I am the light of the world,” (verse 12), it freaked them out.  The Law of Moses they knew, the ordinances, fast days, Holy Days, sacrifices they all knew.  Why didn’t Jesus talk about that?

But the light? Why does that matter?

Because Jesus came to expose the Enemy for what He is.   He wants us to be set free.

Our pastor said, “The first step towards victory is seeing your enemy.” 
How that so fits what I’m reading.

I didn’t realize until I sat outside on a glorious sunny day this week, watching the world fill in with its greens and grays, shadows and shade, you can’t see the true colors of anything until there’s enough light.

I wondered, do the shadows from our past cast our character? Do they change where we stand in the light?

I’m contemplating that a little deeper these days as God brings me closer to Him.

How about you?

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Linking with Jen and SDG and 
with Michelle for Hear it on Sunday.

5 thoughts on “Contemplation

  1. I'm contemplating the two questions near the end of your post. Shadows from our past react differently to light than physical shadows. Bright light dispels shadows immediately in the physical realm. But shadows of pain and poor choices from the past don't necessarily disappear the minute we step into the Light and ask Jesus to be our Savior. HOWEVER! The longer we spend in the Light, the fainter those shadows become–like stains fading gradually in the sun. How thankful I am that “my God turns my darkness into light” (Psalm 18:28b)!

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  2. Good book! I read it about a year ago. L.L. Barkat gave me much food for pondering. Thanks for sharing your perspective on what you are reading as it is reminding me of what I read back then.
    Caring through Christ, ~ linda

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  3. Dear Jody Lee
    This is so true! When the people asked Jesus what works they should be doing to inherit eternal life, He told them that the only work the had to do was to have faith in Him. That ability to let Him live His life in and through them. Even that is a gift from our Pappa's hand.
    Blessings from Michelle's
    Mia

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  4. So glad that you are loving your contemplation. Soon, you will be able to slip into it at unexpected moments–it can become like a friend that always hovers close by.

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