After several years of taking the train from Walton on Thames into Waterloo, I can predict who is going to be on what train. I don’t know their names. I recognize their faces, dress, and behavior. It is as if they are stuck in a pattern of arriving at the same time, getting on the same car, and following a pattern in part of a grand sequence. A few meet up with regular friends. They stand silently along the platform. Isolated in a group, they board the train with cultured detachment, and then sit with minds that are away in their worlds. I wonder what is going on in their minds! Are they alive? Do they have thoughts and opinions? Is there a person inside begging to be let out?
After living in Florida, regularly lectured on the dangers of falling into patterns, I never know what train I will take. Sometimes early, frequently last minute, there is little to predict other than there will be some train between six twelve and nine-sixteen that will carry my body to work. When I meet somebody I know we sit, talk, and catch up. Most of the time I fall into the pattern of standing, walking, and sitting in a world of my own, usually under the spell of the music pouring out from my Ipod.
I used to think those who were spiritual would be boring and predictable. Now I am convinced those responding to God are anything but predictable. God is interested in life as well as those who engage. This connection brings incredible uncertainty because opportunities come without patterns! Part of that process is the wonder of what is going to happen next. When a major feast was scheduled people “were curious about Jesus. There was a lot of talk of him among those standing around in the Temple: ‘What do you think? Do you think he'll show up at the Feast or not?’” (John 11.56)
I wonder which camp I will fall into today. Will I be predictable or responsive to those around me?
2021 Copyright © Daily Whispers.