Tag Archives: dialogue

The Empty Chair #3

Father, in the first and second episodes of this series I have talked about quite a few issues. Issues I feel conflicted about, issues I will need clarifications on. But I cant keep talking and not give you a chance to respond, so this will be the last episode for now. Today I want to ask you about an issue that is relatively common but less talked about.

It is about prayers, the how ,the method the expectations from you and what it really means to pray well. Father, I have seen goid and serious Christians , in my own estimation, who have persevered in prayer for a particular intention; but after a very long time they still dont have answers to their prayers. From those praying for children to those praying for life partners to those praying for good jobs ,the list is endless. And I have also seen others who before they finish praying you have already answered their prayers, they are favoured right left and centre.

I know the Good book says that we dont get what we pray for because we pray amiss. My question then is , what does it mean to pray well? I have listened to different preachers and teachers and am sorry to say they dont all agree on this topic. Its like each person has a different method  that works exclusively for him/her but none that works across divides. I have read about mental prayer ,vocal prayer and everything in between and quite frankly they look and sound academic to me.

In the Scriptures you taught us to persevere in prayer, to pray without ceasing. How do we achieve that Father? You assured us that when we pray in the name of Jesus , you will answer, how come you are not answering these your saints?

I am convinced you do not have favourites, so I want to know what am doing wrong in communicating with you. Over the years I have presented some very specific intentions to you, but got no answer. It was as if you shut your eyes to my situation and your ears to my cries. But I know that you neither sleep nor slumber.

Is it part of perseverance to continue asking for intention A, when its being overtaken by a multitude of other intentions all streaming from the one intention that has not been answered?  (Sometimws its difficult to keep abreast of the different intwntions) Is it that you answer and I dont hear or see? Or you answer and it is interrupted as in the case of Daniel?

Father, communication is the fulcrum upon which my relationshipbwith you rests. How do I communicate better with you? You could also do well to communicate better, you could talk at certain times when a calm voice could soothe frayed nerves. You could speak when a voice is needed in the darkness to calm the frightened child.

But it seems you hold on to your “silence” so much that things go wrong. So many times I have no idea what you want and when  I ask you dont respond. It leaves me hovering on one foot waiting for an answer or sign to stabilize my standing.

Father, theres so much that I need answers and directions on, so much am conflicted about. But for now let me rest my voice, so that in the silence you can make your answers known and your message heard.

The Empty Chair #2

Today Father we continue our dialogue from where we left of the last time. I want to bring another issue to your attention Father. It is how easy it is for cheats to succeed and very difficult for the one who works hard to taste victory.

I have seen good people frustrated in their journey towards success. They believed rightly in the power of your favor and worked hard trusting that your grace will make a difference. But they were disappointed. I know school mates who worked hard to pass exams but failed because a lecturer wanted them to. I also know mates who never worked hard and only appeared on exam days. But they passed exams because they had friends among the teachers or spoke to the teachers in a language that they understood.

Father it continues even outside the school environment. People are skipped for promotions because “they don’t belong” or because “they will rock the boat”. And others that are flowing with the times good, bad and ugly get promotions even before their time. In this era of being “politically right” and morally wrong those who stand for truth are ever decreasing in numbers.  And they are constantly being heckled so they will give in to falsehood.

I know Father that you taught me patience and the Holy book says not to focus on the seeming successes of the evil man but it can be annoying sometimes. To go through sleepless nights and fail only for another to be nonchalant, party all year round and succeed. I know I should not compare myself to others because our destinies are different but couldn’t you end these frustrations or give hope to these disappointed ones? I know you have the power to do both.

People have made commitments not to bribe anybody either with sex, money or any other thing to get jobs and they have not found it, not even on merit. But the ones who gave bribes or favors for jobs are getting jobs. Don’t you think it makes those who believe in you look stupid?

I know I am not supposed to conform to the world but the pressures to do so are increasing exponentially. How do I convince others about you when my hard work is not producing commensurate results? Or how do I tell people to turn from the wide road that leads to destruction when I have “nothing” to show for being on the narrow road.

Father I just wonder , if you can give a bit more success to those who work hard, a bit more promotion in life to those who deserve it, just a little bit more favor for those who wait on you day and night. I just wonder .

The Empty Chair #1

I read a novel a while ago, it was written by Jeffrey Deaver, an awesome author whose books have always held me captive. The novel in question was part of the series on the genius crime scene investigator, Lincoln Rhyme. The book’s title was “The Empty Chair”. It was as captivating and addictive as the ones before it and the ones after it.

In the book a psychological therapeutic measure was described. It involved placing a client/patient in a room with two empty chairs facing each other. She/he is to sit on one of the chairs and imagines somebody with whom there are some unresolved emotional issues or conflict sitting in the opposite chair. The aim is to have a no holds barred dialogue with this individual and in the process express bottled up emotions ,pent up anger, ask questions that couldn’t be asked because possibly the individual is dead. This all happens with the psychologist playing the role of a moderator but doesn’t interfere.

The goal of this therapeutic technique is for the client/patient to accept polarities and acknowledge conflicts that exist in him/her. This is a summarized summary of the Gestalt therapeutic technique in psychology called “The Empty Chair technique”.

So today I am seated and opposite me is an empty chair and I am about to have a conversation with my “empty chair”.

“The first references I heard of you were in the labor room where I was born. I was crying and shouting myself hoarse and the masked people around were all jubilant and thanking you for a job well done. As I grew up I began to learn about you in greater detail. I actually went to classes to learn about you and your works, both literary and physical. I was taught about your spiritual work and its role in my existence today. I was taught that you are God and that I should call you Father.

I learnt of your tripod attribute. Your knowledge of all things (Omniscient), your presence in all places at the same time (Omnipresent) and your being the all powerful (Omnipotent). That makes this dialogue a bit awkward, since I know you know all things (lol). I soaked up all this with my childish mind and strived to be a good son to such a wonderful Father.

As I grew to adolescence it became evident to me, that I had a lot of knowledge about you but it was not impacting my life like I would like. So I sought for answers and found that having a personal experience with you and not vast knowledge about you is what matters. I have tried to do that ever since and by all measures I am still trying.

Much as I have tried, I have not always been good or honest or saintly. I have fallen so many times that I have lost count, but I have not stopped walking towards you.

In my walk with you Father I have had some unresolved issues, issues that I have not gotten satisfactory answers to. It is these issues that I hope we will talk about today.

I start with death, the death of a good man/woman.

In my short lifespan I have come to realize that the good die young and some even die unsung. But the evil and wicked on the other hand live long lives full of sowing seeds of wickedness and sorrow.

When I sought for answers, what I found was grossly unsatisfactory and I dare say illogical. I was told that the wicked ones you give a longer lifespan is for them to have time to repent and come to know you. But the good you call home early to preserve their purity.

This is absolutely illogical, because I will expect the wicked to go early so they stop corrupting the earth. The good on the other hand will have a longer time to spread their goodness and bring people to you by their lives.

Twenty years ago you took my Dad when he was just getting ready to settle down and have a good rest; the type of rest that follows the end of a major task or project. His project then was to raise us up and after treading water for so long, it was time to rest and enjoy the fruits of his labor. But you called him home, I didn’t understand it then and I don’t now. Yesterday, you did it again. You called the father of a very dear friend home at the time he was also getting ready to slow down and rest.

He was by all accounts a good man and by all measures not wicked. Was it wrong to expect that he partakes in the fruits of his labor? Was it too much to ask that he sees his first grandchild or his children get married? By all that is good, couldn’t you have allowed him to spread more goodness on the face of the earth? But you took him in the blink of an eye. Why would you do that?

Father it will be good if you give an answer. With you I know silence is not affirmation but your words end all debate. It will be nice to know why you always stop the good in their tracks and allow the wicked run haywire on the face of the earth!!!!!

A couple days earlier a colleague had died in a ghastly auto accident. By all accounts he was described as a guy with a good heart, but he died on the spot of the accident. You allowed him go too. You called him home unsung.

So now will be a very good time to answer Father. Why will the good man/woman have to live in fear of an early death and the wicked live in certainty of enough time to spread evil? Why be good when it couldn’t even earn me enough time in life to live fully?” (sniffling)