How Thick Is The Surface

Posted by Steve Nyhof on 11 June 2011 | Add a Comment

I have been thinking about the surface of things, how thick it is, and if there is thickness, what is it's value.

Water for some reason comes to mind - the surface of the water. How about a tar road, a glass window or even a blade of grass or paper? If these things have a surface, how thick is it?

As a new world is slowly being revealed to me; learning about my roots, patterns and behaviors - to help me make sense of the puzzle of my life and how God fits into it, I have been separating my behaviors from the eternal essence of who I really am. There is my body, and there is my soul. A type of surface and then essence if you will - two parts.

Over the last six months that my wife and I have been separated, the experience that this afforded me was the single most incredible renewing of my mind and heart that I ever undergone - from unknown terror to unimaginable joy! God has revealed to me a completely new perspective of Himself, on the world, and my and Mary's life.

While in our marriage, our relationship continued to fall apart, and the more I tried to make sense of it so I knew what to do, the more it fell apart. We both believed we were "Christians" or "good people" as the church would have us understand what that meant. But there was another component at work in our members - control.

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. 1 John 4:18

Where there is control there is fear, and where there is fear, there is no love. Love is of God and it exists in our essence, in our deep knowing of the heart that defies reason. Most people, including myself, live in a place of reason where justification, affirmation and expectations exist in the mind - but not in the heart.

As I interacted in this world of uncertainty, everything needed to be controlled, solved, fixed and addressed for fear of loss of control. This is the place I learned was my behaviors, the surface of my life that was the result of being out-of-control, or a type of insanity that I tried my best to manipulate. But can you manipulate something that doesn't exist?

As I began to learn more about why I do and think the way I do, I began to find that there is more to me than my brain working over time to justify, rationalize, or desire affirmation; all driven by expectations of how life and people should fit into my ideals.

However, there is a place in my heart, a knowing place where God lives within me that took time to find. While I heard that He lives within me, my understanding was that He was way out there in space. But, once I placed my life into the care of God, giving up that control, I found God drawing near to me, and a new, brighter and more colorful world began to emerge.

Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. James 4:8

Now lets get back to the thickness of surface. And I am going to connect behaviors to surface because they both have the same value. Have you figured out yet how thick the surface of water is? How about paper? Maybe if you zoomed in a thousand times on the edge of a piece of paper, you could see it's thickness!

Is it possible that there is no thickness at all to surface? And if not, then what is it's value, it's essence?

What I concluded is that there is no thickness, nor value, and therefore it is an illusion. It just does not exist! We use the word to help us understand that a boat floats across the surface of the water, but what is the boat really doing? It is floating over and on the water. Water is. Paper is. Glass is. Everything that exists is what it is - that's it!

How beautiful life becomes, how amazing the world looks when you stop and look at what it is - and not miss it because we are too busy only seeing the surface of things - especially people - because all we know to spend time on is the surface.

He said to them, "You are the ones who justify yourselves in the eyes of men, but God knows your hearts (essence). What is highly valued among men (surface) is detestable in God's sight. Luke 16:15

Is it possible that God knows something we should be looking at more closely? Are we missing the very nature of God because we have created a surface in our minds? Are we so busy trying to compete and look good to others, that all they really see is our surface? Or do we really think they only see the surface?

The word hypocrite could be well used by me, because I was this person. The very definition of the word in my mind means to see through the behavior to the knowing heart. While I worked hard to make my surface look good, I failed to realize that it was just an illusion - it doesn't exist. All my efforts to look good was done in vain.

Our pasts and futures are part of that surface, they do not exist but in our minds. Only living in the moment do you find essence and life in the heart.

The closer I get in my personal relationship with God, the more I enjoy the depths of fellowship with God and others from a knowing place in my heart. There is no surface in these relationships - there is only what is - the true self, God and the beautiful world in which we live.



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