Easter weekend was beautiful, relaxing and filled with utter awe.
I had the opportunity to go for a mini getaway with some good girl friends and found our time so wonderful; filled with good conversations, laughter and moments of rest.
Getting away from all the schedules, time restrictions and to-do list items helped us all relax, but also stop to take in the beauty surrounding us. From the early morning birds to children laughing by the poolside, even the elderly couple having a lovely early dinner at the local RSL.
Although it was short, I found being able to get away with good friends helped bond our friendship closer. This made me think: maybe, just maybe, this is what Jesus spoke about:
'And when you come before God, don't turn that into a theatrical production either. All these people making a regular show out of their prayers, hoping for stardom! Do you think God sits in a box seat?
Here's what I want you to do:
Find a quiet, secluded place so you won't be tempted to role-play before God. Just be there simply and honestly as you can manage. The focus will shift from you to God, and you will begin to sense his grace.
The world is full of so-called prayer warriors who are prayer-ignorant. They're full of formulas and programs and advice, peddling techniques for getting what you want from God. Don't fall for that nonsense. This is your Father you are dealing with, and he knows better than you what you need.'
Matthew chapter 6, verses 5–8 (The Message)
Time for Jesus
Quality time spent with my friends meant I was able to talk openly and not rush conversations. In the same way, Jesus wants our time. Jesus wants our focused attention away from everything else—not just at a 20 minute worship song allocation on a Sunday.
Jesus wants our time during the week—during our coffee walks, during our public transport commute into work/study, and perhaps even during our shower time!
I personally find it difficult to make extended time, in a secluded place, for God—unless I am intentional about it.
A quarter of the way through 2016, and as basic as it sounds, I am learning the art—the wisdom and the grace—of making a getaway. I am finding time to stop and enjoy moments which matter, discovering meaning in all the mundane every day parts of life.
This season I am redefining what 'getaway' means for me, and I pray you may be able to do the same. After all, we have another three quarters of the year left, and I don't want to waste a second trying to do things in my own strength.
Meenal Chandra is a Sydney-based writer who is choosing to getaway all year long.
Meenal Chandra's previous articles may be viewed at www.pressserviceinternational.org/meenal-chandra.html