I've been reading Richard Rhor's book, Everything Belongs, which illustrates how prayer can help us see God's activity in our lives. One suggestion he offers is to adapt the position of using our beginner's mind. He likens this to Jesus' teaching that we must see like a child sees; seeing without all of our adult filters. After all, our adult filters often put God in our boxes and restricts seeing what is right before our eyes.
On Wednesday, Warren Bright of CanCare shared an experience he had using his beginner's mind to see God's activity in his life. Warren is experiencing side-effects from his chemo-therapy and his energy level is affected. On a recent good day, he invited his wife, Beverly, to go to the movies. It was Labor Day and the parking lot of the theater was packed. They couldn't find a parking spot close by and he really needed a spot up front. Warren was persistent in looking for that one spot to come open and finally, a man waved to Warren to enter the spot he was vacating. Warren told me that he didn't think God was so small that God was concerned about getting him a parking space, but then he said, "...but I do think God was working to make that space available for me."
Warren's adult filters were on as he told me this and so were mine. I've been taught to avoid using magical thinking regarding God. Children use magical thinking and I don't believe that if I want something God will magically make it happen. I don't believe Jesus has magical thinking in mind when he says we need to see like a child.
Perhaps Warren and this man were connected by the Spirit of God. After all, patience and kindness are fruits of the Spirit. When I use my beginner's mind to see God at work with this parking spot I can see a patient man continuing to look and a kind man looking to do a good deed. God's Spirit brought them together. God truly is good!
Prayer for Today
Gracious God, help us to see your hand working in our lives and open our eyes to the many miracles that happen around us through the work of your Spirit. Amen.