In a hallway on the other side of the building from my office are two sofas. They are more like love seats. They form the angle of a third of an apple pie, two slices, one for you, one for me. When you sit on these sofas, your back is to a couple windows, your face is toward the empty church sanctuary, hidden behind a brick wall. And most of the time, traffic in this hallway is light.
A couple times a week, when I remember, I walk to the sofas with a cup of coffee and a pile of lists. It’s a printout of my current projects, the list of drafts of various writing things, some articles that I want to read, the list of things that have to get done before I walk out of the building.
I never stay on the sofas very long, unless I fall into the sleep that looks, I tell myself, exactly like prayer. I never stay long because when I sit down and start to look at the list, I start writing. The log-jam clears. I make sketched-out progress on four or six of the things on the list, enough to go back to my office and my computer and write emails and essays and next steps.
There is nothing special about the sofas, I don’t think. Except that I intentionally move away from my connections. I intentionally move away from people. I intentionally move to God.
Because when I walk to those sofas, I am also saying “I need to be able to hear you God.” I would like to believe that it’s what Jesus did when he walked away from the crowds into the hills to pray. When I remember, that’s what I do, taking my lists and brainstorming with God.
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