Posted by: Mike Ferruggia | February 1, 2010

Day 11: Friendship With God

God wants to be your best friend. Rick Warren gives a very good explanation of what friendship entails. But first, he notes it is important to understand that while God created us to be his friends, the fall created a rift, and it was Christ who tore the veil of separation so that we can once again develop a close, intimate, trusted relationship with him.

(This experience of human alienation and isolation is something we all experience anecdotally. It takes disciplined practice to keep the veil torn down so we can work our way back to an awareness and recognition of the presence of a divine, numenous, ineffable source in our lives).

God wants us to be in his inner circle, to be his confidante.
Warren offers 6 secrets of friendship, 2 here in day 11 and 4 more in day 12.

1. Through constant conversation. Staying aware of his presence at all times. Practicing the presence of God. 9This is the hardest for me because God keeps himself hidden and invisible and inaudible, except through things like revelation through his word in the bible. But things like that, when we are human, can be looked at as a big mind f*. Am I really tuning myself into the presence of God or just brainwashing myself into believing in something I don’t see, hear, or really experience. There are moments, but…)

2. Through continual meditation. KNowing God’s word, mulling it over and over in our minds, God reveals himself through his word.

Warren says meditation is nothing more than focused thinking. “When you think about a problem over and over in your mind, that’s called worry. When you think about God’s word over and over in your mind, that’s called meditation. If you kinow how to worry, you already know how to meditate.”

Warren’s question to ponder: What can I do to remind myself to think about God and talk to Him often throughout the day?

(This mindfulness, awareness, living in the presence of the ineffable and divine, is a concept brought to me through the words of Thomas Merton and in my study of taoism amd zen. It is through the work of contemplatives such as Merton that these Buddhist like concepts were adapted into the church–although that might be an unfair statement as contemplative christians were practicing this mindfulness for centuries. But for the common folk, prayer was relegated to memorized words like the Our Father, which is a good prayer, but that contemplative bent on mindfulness and awareness, I think, was something relatively new.

All of these practices are encorporated in the contemplative practice of tai chi chuan. In tai chi, we become fully aware of ourselves, our body mind and spirit, of our relationship to the source, of the energy and life force running through us and in us).


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