When I was a little girl, if I wanted to talk to my dad alone.. I knew I could usually find him in his garage. His garage was well used, so it was a little dirty .. and a little oily… and usually had someone’s car parked in it.
I can still smell it. Like old motor oil combined with the damp… and the smell of the trees blowing in from the open door.
I would walk right in… and sit on the floor of my Dad’s garage.
And I was never more content.
Why was I on the floor?
Because my dad was usually under the car… fixing it… and it was easier to talk to him from down there on the floor.
And talk I did .. from what I remember. But I also remember sitting in silence while he worked.
While I sat there, my dad occasionally asked me to hand him a tool. Sometimes I guessed the tool correctly.. but occasionally he would hold the tool I handed him for a moment… and then ask me for the tool he needed again. That time he would describe it to me.
And I’d try again.
Sometimes more than once.
For me.. that memory is what my prayer space feels like.
A garage? …you ask…
Why not the image of a church.. or a sunny meadow…? Or a flower garden?
While sitting on my dad’s floor… I felt loved, and safe… and heard.
The same way I feel when I pray.
This last year has been a difficult one for me.
So much anger in this world… so much injustice… so much sadness…
… and some of my favorite people getting sick…
I have always told people that I won’t sit and wait for a storm to pass… I’ll find a way to dance in the rain…
… but this last year…?
This year I have found myself sitting on the floor of my Father’s garage..
…talking to God while He works on the world.
I’ve found myself bringing my prayers to Him.. like a child. Bringing my disappointments and sadness …
… sometimes I just sit in silence… letting His love seep into me…
.. and occasionally God asks me to help Him..
.. sometimes I do a good job of guessing what is needed.. but sometimes I need to listen a second .. or even third time before I am success at using my gifts for what He intended.
Especially this year… it feels like it is so hard to use the gifts I have been given.
.. all of gifts… left in that tool box ..
But as I sit in the quiet.. on the floor with my Father?
Once again I feel loved and safe and heard..
And His peace fills me..
So that when I pick myself up off that floor…
I am ready to dance in the rain again..