Tuesday night I did the impulsive, I skipped my bible study. Yup, I actually did. Me, the one who has been writing all these posts about God and our relationship with him, did something totally spontaneous. I am not one to normally skip out and play hooky from something, especially when it involves teaching and learning from God’s word, but I had this unexpected desire to spend time with a good friend. Let me explain.
One of my long time, very good friends had left her phone at work and we were trying to FaceTime so we could catch up a little before I headed out the door. Now, first off this is comical simply because she lives right behind me. (Ok there is a street between us, but our backyards do sort of face each other, she is on a cul-de-sac) We had a poor connection-go figure since we’re so close, so we never really got to catch up or even quite finish an entire thought. So as I was leaving my house for bible study, the car just kinda drove on over to her house.
I had this incredible urge to just spend some time with her to simply enjoy being in her presence. For the simple joy of being together. We had time to share what was happening in each other’s lives and we had time to laugh and encourage one another. Nothing planned, nothing prepared, just a come as you are moment of friendship. A comfortable place to be with no preset agenda, no real time constraints, and a place to relax, rest and rejuvenate. That night when I got home I felt rested, peaceful, full of love and slept so soundly it was a wonderful thing.
I began to wonder whether Jesus is spontaneous. The bible teaches us of the many ways that Jesus experienced all we have experienced in life, so I believe it to be true, that he was spontaneous in his life on earth and he is still spontaneous today. But I began to wonder at the definition of spontaneous.
There were a couple that stood out to me from different sources. The Merriam Webster dictionary uses one definition as without a lot of thought or planning, this is not the type of spontaneity I am speaking of. Jesus puts thought into everything he does. In Jesus, everything has a purpose behind it and that purpose is the redemption of every human being.
I am talking about the type of spontaneity defined in the Free Dictionary as Unconstrained in manner or behavior. He isn’t defined by worldly boundaries, he wasn’t on earth to fit in or to blend in to society. He was present for the simple joy of being in the presence of his creation and to redeem us to himself. To show us there is a better way to live, but he did it in the most unexpected ways.
One of those unexpected ways that came to mind was Jesus at the well with the woman. The most unnatural place for a Jewish man to be, it just was not done in society to be present with the women as they were drawing water from the well, especially when that woman was a Samaritan and an adulterer. But Jesus understood she needed something that she wasn’t able to “see” on her own, so he took the unexpected step, in the eyes of society, of talking to her at the well. (John 4:1-42) It’s a beautiful story of redemption as she discovers who Jesus is, the Messiah, and that hope and life is found only in him. I hope you take a moment to read it.
There are moments in life when spontaneity is needed, even called for. God created that desire within us to just break out of the mold and the societal restrictions we place upon ourselves. To reach beyond what we think we are capable of and to be a little different. It is in the spontaneity that stories are told, support is given and joy is often found. It is also in those moments that God can be found as well.
When was the last time you were spontaneous? Did something out of the ordinary? But even beyond that, have you ever spontaneously just spent time in the presence of God just for the sheer joy of his company? Imagine the joy he feels when you take the time to sit down with him, read his word, and talk to him, just because. I can only imagine the smile in heaven. I’ll be praying that today the urge overcomes you and your hands will grab for your bible and you’ll enjoy the sheer joy of his company and being in his presence.