There are two word spaces that I would like to talk about.
The first is this:
You walk into a party. You’re there with a friend who goes to the bathroom, and you don't know anyone. You're standing in the kitchen. You have a beer in your hand and you're looking at the ceiling.
In this instance, it's an improvement to talk to somebody. Anybody. Words will have to be communicated to start to build connection, long-lasting or brief. Someone else walks in the kitchen. What do you do? You talk to them. It's where you have to start. What's your name and what do you do and all that crap…
It's the same with a new boyfriend or girlfriend. You talk. You talk on the phone. You talk when you're together. You text and text and text. And that's how it should be. There's a knowing in that communication; the words are important.
But then there's a sweet space that comes after you've said words, and it takes a lot to get there. In the same way that E.T is extra terrestrial, this zone I’m talking about is extra words; it's above, beyond, transcends what words are able to do. I can say this from the bottom of my heart, even as someone who likes to write, someone who appreciates the value of words.
But the space beyond is better. It's moments by a fire when you just sit with someone special. It's silence in the car that is not weird. It's a look across the room that means pages and pages of words. It’s hand-in-hand activities where you just sense each other’s heart.
I'm convinced, we can have this with God.
Now first, let me say I think God "speaks" in ways we can understand with human intellect. God talked with Adam and Eve and Moses and Abraham. God likes talkin' to us; I really think that.
Of the crazies who have made attempts at hearing God (I'm one of them), it seems virtually unanimous that God wants to communicate "I love you", a limited, beautiful human phrase. But I think it's the best one we humans have for an infinite, eternal concept, so God muses us and says it so we can comprehend it. If you haven't asked God to communicate to you in a personal way, you should try it. He probably will in crazy ways you wouldn’t expect, or in simple ways you wouldn’t expect.
I mean, heck, it even happened to Jesus right? He gets baptized and the heavens part or whatever, and God is like
“This is my son!”
Part of me wants to imagine Jesus as a teenager being like “Dad… obviously… you’re embarrassing me in front of the guys.”
Anyway, it seems like Jesus made lots of other attempts at communicating with the big man. He was always slipping off to the woods so he could reconnect with pop. I don't really know what that was like, but one account says it was audible at times, so probably there was passion involved.
All this to say, I don't mean to diminish talking with God. Really valuable thing, that.
I just think at some point we can begin to trust that God is with us, in us. That at times our intuition is the same as God's. It's not “WWJD”, but “I have Christ in me.” It's not asking Dad for permission, but walking in authority Dad has given.
I love the story of fish and loaves, not so much for the magic trick part of it (but that's cool). I like that Jesus, the Godhuman guy, was moved and did something. He saw that folks were hungry and he fed them. He was in tune with God without having to look at his bracelet (although, let's be honest if Jesus had a WWJD bracelet that would be amazing). Anyway, I have a hunch that the reason Jesus was so dialed in, was because of all that yelling in the woods he did. He had developed a sort congruence with divine flow. I'm convinced prayer is a lot about that —less about what we gain or realize in an instant. Less about actually getting answers. But about becoming in sync with a particular flow, a certain frequency or melody... personality even.
On a much grander scale, and in a much deeper way, I think the fishes and loaves thing is a picture of something that is divinely true. God knows we are desperate and hungry and means to feed us. What's better, we can, like Jesus did, join the fun. We can take a part in this divine play and help feed people who are hungry. We can trust when we are moved. We can do something and know that God’s got our back. The words have been exchanged and now we can move according to God’s rhythm.
So, if I were to give out homework, I'd say trust yourself. Maybe only one percent of you is Godly. That's fine. Just move towards wherever that one tiny piece is guiding you. You'll be a bit wrong, and God will correct you. As you repeat this a thousand times, you'll find you're accidentally participating in a divine, cosmic waltz that God intended all along.