During the last few weeks, I’ve been preoccupied with the question of how I can deepen my inner connection to Jesus. On the search for answers, I pulled a book out of my “To-Read” pile: Gestillt (Satisfied) by David Zindel from Neufeld Publishing. The subtitle “Night conversations with David” explains what it’s about.
At first, I was irritated. As a publisher, it is important to me to have a good framework for a storyline, and this was missing. A stressed-out and unhappily married man writes letters to King David, and the author barely even makes the effort to create a framework for it other than an introductory letter that communicates to the reader how the publication of the letters in Heaven is contentiously discussed. I think there should have been a little more creativity. I would have described, perhaps, how the good man reads Psalm 23 “I shall not want” in the evening and then writes a rather angry retort to the author, lays it in his Bible, and is astounded the next evening to find an answer on the back of his letter… actually from David.
After the framework, I was further irritated about the stupidity of Reinhard, the writer. At the beginning, he is presented as someone who blames all of his marital problems exclusively on his wife. I know contemporaries, men as well as women, who primarily see the cause of problems in the other person. Yet, I don’t think anyone could be so dumb as to have zero self-awareness like Reinhard at the beginning of the book – at least I hope not!!!
Once I was over the first hump, the book began to fascinate me. King David writes from the perspective of eternity looking back on his life, and he’s learned a few things. I liked how he encouraged Reinhard again and again not to seek fulfillment/satisfaction in things, rather in interacting with God. He wrote and explained this over and over in various ways and nuances… it was very good for me.
A few of the most beautiful thoughts from the book (quoted from memory):
- The quality of satisfaction can be known by its aftertaste (A very wise thought, I think. It goes for food as well as events and interactions).
- Pouring your heart out and allowing it to be refilled again belong together. One without the other makes no sense. (I thought this really good!)
- Spiritually dry times are gifts from God. He is attempting to release us from our own not-really-rewarding attempts at satisfaction.
- Obedience has to do with hearing. Obedience is the ability to hear.
- God wants to wash our dirty laundry white, not to discuss the gray parts with us.
- When we draw back from things, we can then receive and enjoy them anew as gifts from God – in a free way – as satisfied people, not as longing, insatiable, unsatisfied people who imbibe everything and, because they remain unsatisfied, must continually increase the doses.
- David, when looking back from Heaven on his revenge acts: “Only now do I know that a happy life is made of settling the balance immediately, in emergencies from your own pocket.”
Thankful, I lay a good book aside… the valuable thoughts from it will accompany me for a while still.
– See more at: http://kerstinpur.de/glaube/gestillt/#sthash.7HXT8JFD.dpuf