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Saturday, May 2, 2009

What is Your Body Language Saying?

My 21 year old son is home from New York this week. He is attending school in Manhattan for comedy, acting and improv. He always has some great stories to share from the Big Apple…those folks tend to be a bit different than us country living Mid-Westerners.

He was telling me about a book he’s reading on body language. He explained how we in America like our “personal space” to which a gave a hearty “AMEN!”

He said that he had been “testing” some of the theories in this book while at LaGuardia airport. He observed people getting on the escalator, one steps on and the next person waits then steps on to leave one step between the two.

Perfect opportunity for my budding comedian. He steps on in order but then takes another step up, and then puts his foot on the other persons step. He said the response was just as the book said it would be, the person stiffens and leans as far away as possible.

Of course he finds great humor in this, while I shudder at the thought!

Along the same thought, I think we have all experienced the etiquette for boarding an elevator. When someone is on the left side, you step in to the right. The next person steps into the middle and we all follow suite keeping a courteous distance from those around us. All the while keeping a safe distance from the forbidden spot in front of the buttons that need to be pushed.

But, have you ever met a close talker? Or someone who will walk into an empty waiting room and sit right next to you? They are what my husband calls “space invaders.”
We in America like our space. When someone gets too close, we respond by turning away or stepping back.

The opposite is true however of relationships that are loving and dependant.
Children want to be close to their parents, couples want to hold hands and lean
on one another. Thank God for the healthy relationships that unite us and bring
us close to one another. Which brings me to the most important relationship we
have, the one between us and our God.

Where do you stand with that one? Do you step back when the Lord closes in on you? What is your body language with the God who created and loves you? Do you turn your shoulder or cross your legs in the opposite direction so to speak?

When He whispers to your heart, do you lean in to capture every word or back off afraid that it just might be too personal?

Sometimes He thunders His words, other times it’s a still small voice that we need to be paying very close attention to.

He wants us to come in close to Him so that He can speak to us and protect us.

Psalms 91:4
4 He will cover you with His feathers,
and under His wings
you will find refuge;
His faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.

Look at the wording, ‘cover with His feathers’ and ‘under His wings.’ That’s some pretty close-intimate personal space we’re getting into there! That is how God wants it, that is where we are the safest, tucked under His wings.

Our refuge is not found in our independance, but we are protected when we press in close to Him and listen intently to His voice.

Personal space is fine with strangers, but make yourself right at home with the
Lord. Settle in tight! He loves it when you invade His space and then welcome His
love into your life.

Father, help those of us who through pain and fear have kept our distance from You. Heal the hurts that keep us from trusting You completely. Lord we invite you into our hearts and lives, and we choose to seek after the comfort that only You can bring.
Thank You for loving us so completely!
In Jesus Mighty Name we pray.

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Blogger Denise said...

I enjoyed this, bless you.

May 2, 2009 at 1:25 AM  
Blogger Susan Storm Smith said...

Excellent posting. I, having lived in NYC, laugh at the description, the book's author has apparently not been in a subway train to get to work in the Big Apple--push/crush/get in that train!

But it isn't just Americans, it is the same in other countries as well, we like personal space. But oh, to run into the lap and arms of our Lord, that's special. And in that, I'm still a Kid of the King.

May 2, 2009 at 7:46 AM  
Blogger Praise and Coffee said...

Thanks! Oh I son has told me that personal space is not an issue in the subways and stuff! It sounds like all etiquette all together may be out the window in crowded NYC! :)
China was the same way!

May 2, 2009 at 10:10 AM  
Blogger christy rose said...

I liked your charge to us to not leave our personal space between us and God. Personal space is actually good and healthy to a certain degree . But, like you said, in intimate relationships, it should be eliminated. And the most intimate relationship we should have is with our God.

May 2, 2009 at 10:33 AM  
Blogger Darnelle said...

"Father, help those of us who through pain and fear have kept our distance from You. "

It's amazing how many of us operate for years under that kind fear and pain. I still remember the day that God whispered in my ear, "I am safe." Changed my life . . . still makes me emotional . . . still a powerful truth. We can trust Him, completely!

Awesome word, Sue. Awesome and so needed.

May 2, 2009 at 11:56 AM  
Blogger lisalyn said...

Thanks for sharing. I do like my personal space...just never thought of it in relation to God. Thanks for reminding me of that. :)


May 2, 2009 at 4:34 PM  
Anonymous Annie said...

I was with my sister. We stepped into an elevator. However, she turned to face the back of the elevator and I stayed looking at the doors. Incredibly, no one got on! We thought it was hilarious!!!
When I take classes or seminars, I always change my seat. It is amazing to me that even this slight change can make a huge difference in someone's day!
People love comfort zones. But with God, there is never a zone that is uncomfortable or inflexible. Sometimes life shakes us up, as it ought too, but we can always count on Our Redeemer above to take the discomfort, turn it around and cause our heart strings to play with the flow, instead of taking a rest.

May 2, 2009 at 8:50 PM  
Anonymous Sarah Ann Goebel said...

Great devotional! I have found that there are many who do not really understand what Christ accomplished for them at the cross. They know they are saved but they do not really understand that since Jesus' life was the payment for their sins and they have been justified before God, they no longer need to carry around guilt, shame and condemnation. I was in this place for years in my Christian walk but am so glad I am now free! Romans tells us that there is now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus! Abide in Him beneath the shadow of those wings, by accepting this truth into your life. As Christians, Christ lives in us, but as we accept His truths into our lives, we begin to abide in Him. It is in this place that you find freedom from the bondage of your imperfections and freedom for relationship with Him! For Christ's Glory! Sarah Ann Goebel,

May 3, 2009 at 8:36 PM  

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