Ever feel like you left something Unfinished?
This blog has been like that for me the last few weeks. My ISP has let me down horribly and my connection speed was faster when I had dial-up 20 years ago.
I spent last weekend at a little reserve called Jongensgat near Stilbaai in South Africa. It’s about 4 hours drive from my home and it’s the most amazing place to go to reconnect with life and people who are important.
It has no cell reception.
Cooking is done over a fire in a poitjie (kind of like a small cauldron) and takes 2-3 hours.
Everything is slow, intimate. Just the way it should be. There’s no
interruptions from whatsapp or email. No inane television forcing you to tune in and
zone out mentally.
You get to reawaken from a slumber you don’t even realise you’re trapped in.
Basically you get to wake up and realise what the important stuff in your life is that is unfinished.
And 4 days there isn’t close to enough.
We left under a dark cloud. For those married guys reading this, some free advice: Be open and honest with your spouse at all times. This includes if you have a close friend of the opposite gender – even if he mother is your age (perhaps especially) – and you write her a note, avoid the greeting “Hi Beautiful”. If your wife finds this (and she will) it will cause an issue you may not have intended. What appears to a “Y” chromosome to be a friendly greeting to a friend carries VERY different connotations to your wife. Just don’t do it.
Thankfully, the location means we had nothing to do but talk through the issue and reach a resolution. I understood why it hurt her, she (I think) understood that it wasn’t intended as anything more than a face-value “hello”.
But I won’t be doing it again.
Four days. We arrived at 2am. I don’t recommend this. The sun will wake you around 6am. There is no escape to this.
But we had four days of watching Cape Robins hopping across the deck outside our door, rock dassies running helter-skelter around the cliffs and grass, and tortoises meandering about the area. The only sound is the crashing of the ocean, literally a stone’s throw from your door (if you have a good arm).
Peace. A chance to hear God again away from the bustle of everyday life.
I love this place. No distractions except what you bring – so pack selectively. A couple of good books, my laptop and a few selected DVDs to play on it.
And most importantly, an open heart to pray and hear God.
In that time, my wife and I rediscovered part of why we love one another that in everyday life gets buried – we enjoy each other’s company. I had a chance to simply sit with God knowing I wouldn’t be interrupted by email, telephones, cell calls, messages or anything else.
And I was able to pray for an outcome to some issues we’ve been facing.
We’ve come home, and some of those issues which were so huge when we left are almost resolved. Job offers out of nowhere. Opportunities to move forward. Answers to uninterrupted prayer which had the chance to be truly prayerful and focussed on listening.
We spend too much time giving Go a laundry-list of demands and not enough time listening. Our prayer goes unfinished.
Take the time to go somewhere. Or just turn off the electronics for a day. Reconnect and finish that most important thing: the next step of your relationship. Intimacy.
Don’t quit, finish the task.
Let your spouse know they are the most important human relationship you have.
Let yourself remember the most important relationship you have is with Jesus.