That Bench in The Garden

“How do you know me?” Nathanael asked. Jesus answered, “I saw you while you were still under the fig tree before Philip called you.” – John 1:48

After I received my result in that semester, I needed to clear my head. Too many simulations were ongoing. I knew I needed to make a major shift. I needed all my being to be concentrated on the task ahead. I was stunned.

A time comes when you need to be alone – without the hustle and bustle of everyday’s demand. You just want to be alone to reflect on the past, present and future. You just need to be alone with your God.

The first day I walked into that garden, I didn’t know one day I would have a familiar bench to reflect on my life. Some called it “Love Garden“, others called it “Prayer Garden“. The latter seem to be the original name, which isn’t a bad name seeing that God is Love.

The name “Prayer Garden” lived up to its expectation as it was synonymous with prayers in the evening. For me, it was a reflection place and I had a bench – my bench. Surrounded by green foliage with a couple of ant-hills at some corners, the Garden housed my bench – a concrete bench with a back rest.

It was a gateway for me to my Father. There were times when I just couldn’t explain how I feel to anyone – my friends, colleagues etc. There were times I needed to grief a loss and needed his comfort. There were times, I needed direction and I needed to seek his face.

“Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted. Relieve the troubles of my heart and free me from my anguish. Look on my affliction and my distress and take away all my sins. See how numerous are my enemies and how fiercely they hate me! Guard my life and rescue me; do not let me be put to shame, for I take refuge in you. May integrity and uprightness protect me, because my hope, LORD, is in you.” – Psalm 25:16-21

Whenever I was worried, whenever I felt alone, whenever I see that I have drifted away from the pack, I head for that bench in the Garden. I loved it in the evenings, watching the sun set, the cool breeze and the gathering of nature’s night choir.

Yours may not a bench in a garden but you need a place to quietly commune with your father without the earthly distractions. Switch off your phone. Turn off your data. Forget that Soap Opera. Postpone that arrangement. Locate your place and lay your heart before him.

I missed my bench. It was a jolly good bench. I always had directions after using that bench. It was my gateway. Do you have a place to connect?



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