Mar 5, 2017 filed under Beatitudes, Faith.

How to Hang Out with God

Here’s my Lenten lesson so far: I am totally dependent on God to make any change in thought or behavior at all. Funny how we keep learning the same lessons over and over again, but go a little deeper with them each time.

I’ve been trying to notice during Lent how I handle not getting what I want or expect, and trying to immediately accept What Is. The result has been both deflating and encouraging. Deflating because I’d rather be in charge of what, how, and when I do things and encouraging because there’s a cure for too much self-will: the way to be closer to God is to stop “doing” so much and start “being” with Him more.

Someone sent me the piece below, which is based on John 15, years ago. I don’t know who wrote it, but I’m glad they did. It helped put things in perspective and I hope it does the same for you. Scroll down and leave a comment to let me know what you think!

Love always,
Rose

As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you; abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full. (Jn 15:9-11).

Me: God, what do You want me to do?

He: I know what I want to do, what do you want to do?

Me: Well, I would like a happy marriage, well-behaved children, clean house, health, enough money…

He: Okay, all good things.

Me: What do You want me to do?

He: Hang out with me.

Me: Hang out?  What do You want to do?

He: Hang out.

Me: What do You want to talk about?

He: Let’s just hang out.

Me: Now what do You want to do?

He: Nothing, let’s just hang out.

Me: What can I do?

He: Hang out with me.

Me: Then what?

He: Love.

Me: Then what?

He: Love some more.

Me: What for?

He: Because I said so.

Me: What good is it for?

He: You’ll see.

Me: I don’t feel very loving.

He: I know.

Me: How am I going to do it?

He: Just do it.

Me: Why?

He: Because I told you so.

Me: What else?

He: That’s it.

Me: What do you mean, that’s it?

He: Just hang out with me.

Me: It’s hard for me to hang out, I need to be doing something.

He: I know.

Me: So what should I do?

He: Hang out with me.

Me: How do I do it?

He: You’re doing it right now.

Me: I feel ridiculous, You just want me to hang out?

He: Yeah.

Me: I love You…what I know of You.

He: Love you too.

Me: What do You love about me?

He: That you hang out with me.

Me: Who wouldn’t want to hang out with you?

He: You’d be surprised.

Me: Surprise me.

He: Well, for instance, you. You often have a million things going through your head, or you fill it up with silly fantasies or judgments or you worry too much.

Me: Sorry.

He: I forgive you.

Me: So what do You want to do?

He: Let’s just hang out and see what happens.

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16 Responses to “How to Hang Out with God”

  1. Mary Clarke

    Love it! Yes, God just wants our love and to love others. Can you imagine how wonderful this world would be if we just loved God and all His children.

    Reply
    • Rose Folsom

      Mary,
      Yes, without “what I want” getting in the way. What’s the phrase — “The best way to have what we love is to love what we have.”
      Thanks for your comment!
      Rose

      Reply
  2. Christine Longhenry

    This sums up the reaction of so many of us as we work our way through Lent…and life! Too often we get caught up our own frantic busyness, thinking that whatever we do is for the glory of God. That isn’t always the case. I think that God really doesn’t care how busy we are. He isn’t impressed by the number of church committees we serve on or how many times we attend religious meetings or how many rosaries we recite daily. Sometimes He just wants to be with us and “hang out.” Be still and know that I am God.

    Reply
    • Rose Folsom

      Chris,
      So true. When I fail to hang out with Him, I know the main reason is that I may hear something in the silence that I don’t want to hear. Like “I created you for *you,* not your accomplishments.”
      Rose

      Reply
  3. Sal

    This is a great dialogue to show that our Lord loves each and everyone of us and simply wants us to love Him in return. He is so kind and loving that He won’t force us to love Him and give thanks for all the blessings we have (whether we know it or not as they are from Him too!). The spiritual battle is great, and we need to simply not let ourselves be distracted by all
    the worldly things and focus on Him.

    Reply
  4. Max

    Hi Rose,
    I do that all the time. Lately I have free time and I am learning to hang out. This was a great reminder that we need to learn and make it a habit.
    Thank you

    Reply
  5. Vanessa Parks

    Rose,

    Thank-you so very much for sharing!!! Just beautiful. There is no need for further comment nor earthly explanation. God’s Grace in abundance

    God Bless

    In Jesus Holy Name. Amen

    Reply
  6. Kass

    Rose, What a great dialogue! God just wants us to feel His love. If only we could slow down especially during this lent and let God enter our hearts and just hang out.
    We may just feel His Peace.

    Reply
  7. Tom Roberts

    Sometimes it’s not possible to hang out in the conventional sense. Once, in an Alanon meeting, a woman who had a house, kids and an alcoholic husband to look after said “I do dishes with God.” I thought “That’s it!” If you’re doing dishes chances are you’re doing them alone and the kitchen becomes the inner room Jesus spoke of in Matthew 6:6. Then, instead of crabbing about the lack of volunteers, you can look forward to those minutes of solitude when you can hang out with God. You can take pleasure by doing it well. The quote from the 1981 movie “Chariots of Fire” goes like this: “You can praise God by peeling a spud if you peel it to perfection.” Hanging out with God and paying attention to your work; that’s not multitasking.

    Reply

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