I'm Pretty Sure God Dances
One of the most amazing and rewarding things for myself over the past year has been seeking and finding a God of my understanding. I have said before that my relationship with God was quite hostile on my part and had been distant for most of my adult life when I decided to get help for alcoholism. I remember reading the 12 steps of recovery for the first time in rehab and I panicked a little when I read step three, which says, "Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him." WHAT?! How was I possibly going to turn my will and life over to the care of God when I had shut the door on Him years ago.
As we understood Him? I didn't really know Him. And what I did know of Him...I wasn't the biggest fan of. Keep in mind I had not had a relationship with God most of my adult life and then I blamed Him and was beyond angry with Him when my brother died last year. The best I can describe my image of God was cold and distant...like a mean school teacher that punished you for getting out of line. You know the one...the one who only liked the straight +A students who did exactly what they were suppose to do all the time. So, you can see my dilemma. I couldn't possibly trust handing over my will and my life to the care of God with the way I understood Him.
I remember sitting in my counselors office in rehab and she painted a picture of the God she had come to know through her recovery. He sounded pretty cool. She told me that like any relationship, you have to spend time with Him to get to know Him and that at that moment, all I had to do was be willing, and I was. Before I was able to open my eyes to see what God was doing in my life, I saw it clearly in the rooms of AA and what He had done in other alcoholics lives. People who were just like me and had made a lot of bad decisions just like me. I wanted what they had and that was enough for me at that point.
So, for the past 13 months, I have been spending time talking (praying) to listening (meditating) to God. And what do you know...He ROCKS! He's not at all what I thought. He's loving and kind. And patient. Oh, does He have patience! He's funny and has a sense of humor. He laughs and smiles. And...I think He dances a lot! I am sure He shakes His head at me a lot and I probably make Him nervous when I am teetering on a bad decision, but at end of the day, I know He is my biggest cheerleader. I know He loves me and wants the best for me. He gloried in my weakness because He used it to bring me closer to Him and my constant need for Him keeps me close to Him.
God is found in everyone and everything. And when you are aligning YOUR will with HIS will...well, then it is easy to see Him everywhere and in everyone.
Like any relationship, my relationship with God is an evolving one. And that may be the most beautiful thing about it. The more I experience what God is doing in my life, the more I trust Him and get to know Him. The more time I spend in His presence, the closer I become to Him. There are challenges with this for me sometimes. Being still within is sometimes hard for me. I mean, let's face it...most of our lives are all over the place and sometimes a little crazy. But, I find that being in places that are untouched by man is when I feel most connected to Him.
I was recently down on Seabrook Island for a long weekend. I lived in Charleston for 8 years and I had never looked at the natural beauty around me as I did that weekend. Watching the sunrise and sunsets over the marsh was nothing less than a spiritual experience. I believe that places on earth that have been untouched by man are the closest we come to getting a glimpse of Heaven. My brother and I both went to College of Charleston and shared a love for the Lowcountry. I couldn't help but to think that Will was in his own Lowcountry in Heaven that looked just like the one I was at. That is a gift from God that I would never have seen previous to my recovery. It's always been there...just waiting for me to open my eyes. I imagine God looking down at me for all those years with so many gifts right in front of me just shaking His head that I didn't see them...being sad for me. Today, I am pretty sure He looks down with happiness and smiles when I see the gifts He lays out for me each day.
“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” 2 Corinthians 12:9