Meeting God at Panera: Day 1

Meeting God at Panera: Day 1 June 10, 2010

Over the years that I’ve been blogging there have been times when I’ve blogged more often than others.  This year in particular I’ve had a hard time meeting the 2-3 times per week pace that I customarily like to keep.  It’s true, life’s been especially challenging this year, and I have been writing regularly over at the Associated Baptist Press, but for many reasons it’s time to get back on track.  Writing is a discipline, not just an activity for whenever you feel like it.


I’ve decided to take up a 30 Day Blogging Challenge, similar to this.  I’ll post something everyday.  It has to be at least 150 words and not X-rated, both requirements of which I am fairly certain I can meet.

The downside to all of this is that I usually polish and polish and polish what I write and post; I like a more finished product.  I realize that taking on this challenge will mean that’s largely not possible.  So I will work toward overcoming my own discomfort with that and apologize to all of you in advance—who knows what will appear if I have to write every single day?

And so . . . here we go.

It’s about 7:00 a.m. on Thursday and I am sitting in Panera in Downtown Silver Spring.  This is part of my recent attempts to study and study for the sermon all week long, then block out most of Thursday AWAY from the office so I can write.

Writing at the office doesn’t work—too many distractions.  Writing at home doesn’t work—too many temptations.  Panera seems, strangely, to work.

This early in the morning—until about 11:30 or so—the restaurant is largely empty.  If you get there early you can usually find a spot near the two electrical outlets in the restaurant fairly easily.  You plant yourself at a cozy little table, grab a cup of coffee, and wait for the Spirit of God to show up.  I don’t want to give the impression that I am suffering for Jesus at Panera, though.  There are bagels.  And huge windows with lots of light.  And really comfortable chairs.  And peaceful classical music playing softly in the background.  And free Wi-Fi.

In fact, the very hardest things about showing up here to write are keeping my calendar free and overcoming my guilt of not being physically in the office.  On the weeks when I can overcome these obstacles, though, I find this to be a peaceful and creative place to work.

If I don’t spend time writing blog entries, that is.

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