Playdates with God

I am reading Wendell Berry and I realize something is missing.
I know for a while again
the health of self-forgetfulness,
looking out at the sky through
a notch in the valley side…
(excerpt: V, from Sabbaths 2000 in Given by Wendell Berry)
There is snow on the ground outside but the sun beams bright for the first time in days and here I am–stuck inside, staring at a computer screen. The world is melting.
I need chocolate.
The first thing I think of is the beautiful batch of dark chocolate brownies that Monica sent me all the way from Colorado. They arrived a couple days ago along with a book she wanted me to have, some homemade granola, a little bit of tea, and a smattering of her famous granola bars. I have been living high off the hog these past two days.
All because of this. This word: Sehnsucht. Because of this she says: We wander homeward together. Thank you for your companionship on the journey.
Nuke ‘em, she has written, by way of instruction, so I do and as I sink my teeth into rich yummy decadence I say a silent prayer of thanks for Monica and her friendship. It tastes good but these holes stay…I am a slice of swiss cheese–a moon made of it, orbiting my life, held by gravity.
Then I think of the tides. My mother-in-law watched a special on the moon the other day. Do you know…if it wasn’t for the moon, the earth would be covered by the sea? She tells me, among other things.
I think these things as I munch the brownie. And I know, this moon, this pock-marked satellite, must change orbit and change the tide of this day. Time to play outside.
So we go out, into the melting world. And boys discover what perfectly malleable snowballs the trickling snow makes. It’s piled on the street corners, bunched up around the edges of life. And the mom-moon becomes the target.
It’s cold on my neck and I run mad…laughing crazy, away from the snow-bullets until I make my own ammunition and this is wild joy, erupting from inside the holes of me.
I told her: maybe I should try to tame the sehnsucht…knowing what a foolish thing it was to say.
Keep it wild, girl!
That’s what she said.
So I run wild with all these God-shaped holes leaking joy out of me and an occasional snowball fills in the emptiness.
He always knows. But I don’t always listen. Maureen said it and got me thinking. Playdates with God, she said. And that’s what it is when I go outside to play.
How about you? How do you embrace the God-joy? Every Monday I’ll be sharing one of my Playdates with God. I would love to hear about yours. It doesn’t have to be outside. Maybe it’s quiet. Maybe it’s solitary. Maybe it’s loud and crowded. Just find Him. Be with Him. And come tell us about it.

Grab the Playdates with God button–the code is on the sidebar! A big thank you to L.L. Barkat for designing this fun button for me.

Sharing in community with L.L. Barkat for On, In, and Around Mondays.
 On In Around button


  1. says

    Cool way to put it, playdates with God. For me? Walking in the woods, being at a sporting event with the family, holidays at home. They are all energizing and uplifiting. Good post.

  2. says

    How lovely! Would it be okay to say that every moment of every day feels like a playdate with god to me? Because I never feel apart from god (except sometimes we are just sitting quietly together looking in opposite directions, musing … because sometimes space creates togetherness.)

  3. says

    A slice of Swiss cheese
    comes with its own holes.

    You think to fill them
    with a smear of mayonnaise,

    a slash of yellow mustard, making
    edible barriers between ham

    and hunks of fresh French bread
    disappear. Now you sweep the crumbs

    into your palms, tip the cloth
    against the corner of your mouth,

    re-place the plate and glass,
    wondering what to use to fill

    the spaces you don’t see, tiny
    pinpricks to your heart you want

    to keep from eating at you. Play
    for laughs, cache chocolate kisses

    to get His attention. Swallow
    the cold whole on your tongue. Snow

    always melt when fire comes close.

  4. says

    The government of Ghana is predicting a cocoa (chocolate) shortage. I am not making this up.

    I predict riots in the streets. We’ll give up our gasoline before we give up our chocolate.

  5. says

    Oh, what fun! These days I am spending more time in the kitchen with food than I am here online. I wonder if Monica will share her granola bar recipe?

    A playdate with God? I reckon I just had one with Him and 29 little kiddos in the gymnasium where I taught basketball to K-5 students. Smiles and giggles make an outing a “date,” right?


  6. says

    “I need chocolate.” So, I’m not alone, in more ways than one. 🙂 Glynn’s comment has me almost in a panic.

    Your snowball fight got to me. Every time Charles and the boys have a snowball fight, I never participate. I always say that I don’t understand why that is fun. Maybe I should try it. It’s snowing a lot today; maybe I should actually try it.

    I’m wondering, can it actually be fun?

    Love these playdate Mondays. Inspiring…

  7. says

    This makes me think of the movie about Jesus (not sure which one) where in one scene He is walking along a country path with His disciples. They are laughing together and jostling each other like school boys.
    I love the idea of a play date with God, Laura.
    You are such a clever girl.

  8. says

    ~What a perfect gift!
    ~Like the moon part of your thoughts . . . I had a dream last year that I arrived at the store to see water in the parking lot and three moons in the sky. Just had to look it up after that and realized there was something to it.
    ~Playdate with God?! How wonderful. Closest I come right now is with my girls and writing after too much time keeping my pen silent. Now I really want to explore this. Thank you.

  9. says

    What a gorgeous post — what a great joyfest!

    Thanks so much for taking me along on your wild day outside.

    I enjoyed every moment of it!

    And thank you for dropping by my place and leaving your kind remarks.


    Louise G

  10. says

    What a great idea – a “Playdate with God.” Is this in the bible somewhere? 🙂 It’s probably woven throught scriptures, everywhere. It’s in the feeding of the 5,000. It’s in David’s wild dancing in the street. It’s in the physical glory of the Song of Solomon.

    What a beautiful way to fill those holes.

    ps, I have not yet read Wendell Berry. Seems like everyone else is leading me to this author!

  11. says

    By the way, you amaze me with these new playdate Mondays—on top of the book club! How do you do it all?

    Yes, I’m the mama lion. I was the program manager for that conference (and worship leader/planner, and one of the workshop leaders, and sound recording technician, and…). Classic example of my control-freak, perfectionist side. And I sure paid for it. About a month later we had one of those refining times in our marriage, and I realized I was doing too much church/ministry stuff—and my family was suffering because of it.

    Neat thing, though (and how God uses us in our errors and weaknesses!): about a year later I attended the funeral of one of the ladies that went to that conference. I found out (this is a full year later!) at the funeral that she had given her life to Jesus during that conference weekend! Amazing, blessed, good God.

  12. says

    Oh, wicked excited (that’s the New England in me!) about your new Linky — Playdates with God! I love it, yes I do…I will be back in the near future to join in. Yippee!!

    Oh…and love this post, too — how could one not? Chocolate, gifts, love…

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