Ever known a friend for a long time and think you know her well- even predictably? Then, all of a sudden that person begins a new behavior, comes up with a radically new idea, or shares part of the past you never knew? It is surprising but the revealing shows that that friend trusts you with this new information. It is our part to notice the new thing, to attend to what our friend is saying with her words or actions.
Sometimes I feel like I treat God like a comfortable old friend. I learned all about Him in Bible school. I graduated from a Christian university with a Bible minor. Been serving Him for years. I know Him well, comfortably, predictably…like an old, comfortably-bored married couple that doesn’t notice much about each other anymore.
Good heavens! Who am I talking about? The God of the universe? Dull, predictable, ploddingly pleasant? Oops.
Scripture should be enough to help cure that thought pattern: Lamentations 3:23 reminds us that His mercies are NEW every morning. (Plural mercies, NEW, daily)
I’ve started to notice that when I slip into comfotable ploddingness, God blesses me with the senses to notice something new. Today it was the beauty of learning a new bluebird song (Let everything that has breath, praise the Lord). God gave me the gift of noticing it. I want to develop that gift- I don’t want to plod.
Often the new thing to notice comes in a normal-life disruption. Paula D’Arcy says, “God comes to you disguised as your life.” (As in, He is running the universe, not me- despite the fact that I think I give Him pretty good advice from time to time…I need to notice what He’s doing and work with Him, not kick against Him.)
If I notice, notice, notice those new mercies each day, I might truly get to know the Christ who calls us friends, God who creates those mercies.