Friendship with God: Day 2



Lent is an invitation. We are invited to walk with Jesus as he did during the forty days and forty nights he wandered in the desert. We are invited to accompany our Lord as he withdraws into a lonely place. Imagine then, that God is extending an invitation to you to join him in the cloister garden of your heart that we entered yesterday. Have you taken the step of inviting him in?


Lent is a time for us not to be afraid of choosing to be alone, but to trust that, even in our loneliness, indeed especially there, there is space for Jesus to dwell with us, drawing us ever closer to himself.


Take these few minutes to be alone with Jesus. Let him speak to you through his word. Read the story of the garden of Eden in Genesis 3. After a day of labor, God walks “in the garden at the time of the evening breeze” (Genesis 3:8). Imagine this scene as a regular occurrence. Picture the cloister garden in your heart. God and human beings, after a day of work, get together in the cool of the evening to walk and talk. This is an image of friendship and intimacy, of cooperation in creativity and in relaxation. Let yourself bask in this image-“inhabit it.” Walk with God in the cool breeze of your own cloister garden. Pay attention to how you react as you do.

Note this in your prayer journal.


Read Matthew 13:31. Jesus said that the Kingdom of God is like a mustard seed, “the smallest of all the seeds on the earth. But once it is sown, it springs up and becomes the largest of plants…so that the birds of the sky can dwell in its shade.” Margaret Silf, the British Christian author of many bestsellers about the spiritual journey, argues that when we make this journey inwards, allowing God to penetrate the center, our hearts, to inhabit our garden, a powerful creative act takes place. She calls this the germination of the Godseed.


Our Godseeds are nothing less than the immanent (present to us individually and collectively in our hearts and in our human experience) God, locked up in our hearts, waiting to be set free in an act of germination, an act of resurrection. When this happens, we can say that not only has God touched us, but has “taken root” in our lived experience. It is God’s dream to plant this seed within us and allow it to flourish into a deep and abiding friendship.


We might reflect at this point on Mary’s response to the Annunciation. Imagine God saying to you: “Are you willing to bring me to birth in your own life, in the cloister garden of your heart?” And you can respond as Mary did: “Let it be done to me according to your will.” (Luke 1:38)


In your prayer, invite Jesus to come into your garden and walk with you. Ask him to germinate the Godseed within you and pray with Mary, “Let it be done to me according to your will. “