Saturday, August 23, 2008

Connect with God

by Gina Bridgeman

Thus says the Lord: 'Set your house in order...'
—Isaiah 38:1

You can see Camelback Mountain from all around Phoenix, Arizona (a bit of it even from my backyard), and it really does look like a camel lying on its stomach. But seeing its most interesting feature is a tougher trick. There’s a chunk of rock near the camel’s forehead that looks like a prayerful figure trudging up the mountain clothed in a dark brown robe.

Because of the surrounding rock formations, you can see the Praying Monk only from certain angles. Driving my son Ross home from school, I catch sight of the monk as I approach from the west, but within a few blocks he disappears as I face the camel head-on. More than once I’ve heard Ross’s frustration as he’s tried to show the monk to out-of-town visitors. "Wait," he’ll say, "you have to be in just the right spot to see him." And as promised, the monk suddenly pops into view.

Just the right spot to see him. Lately I’ve been thinking that’s a clue to what can go wrong in my spiritual life. When my days are hectic, with prayer and devotional time cut short or even cut out, I start to feel disconnected from God. I’m simply not in the right place to see God clearly. God’s always there, as steady as the familiar Praying Monk, but I’m driving down the road too busy with life’s distractions to notice.

It’s probably not a coincidence that this rock formation is a praying monk. When I spy the monk in prayer, he’s a perfect reminder of what I must do when my priorities slip. I need to slow down, pull off the road if necessary, and make time for the things that bring me closer to God, especially peaceful time alone to talk with Him. I need to get myself back in just the right spot to see God unmistakably before me every day.

Lord, help me put all distractions aside, to see and hear and be with only You.

The above devotional is excerpted from Daily Guideposts book of devotionals, now available on OurPrayer.

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