by Michael J. Klassen
So I’m sitting in a Starbucks working on this blog when a guy walks over to the counter to pick up his drink from the barista. “What’s going on?” the barista asks? It’s obvious that the customer is a regular.
“Oh, just chillin’,” he replies.
“Chillin’” is an interesting word. No, it isn’t a contraction for “children,” nor is it a reference to the soul food consumed in the American south. That would be “chitlins,” which, truth be told, are the small intestines of a pig that are steamed or fried to perfection.
Chillin’ means to hang out. It doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re doing anything in particular, although it doesn’t mean you aren’t engaged in activity.
A week ago, we explored the relationship between Adam, Eve, and God. Evidently, creation’s first couple enjoyed walks with God in the garden before they sinned. In the same way, you and I were created for intimacy with God.
The Hebrew Word For “Chillin’”
But Adam and Eve weren’t the only ones to enjoy walks with God. Genesis 5:24 tells us that “Enoch walked faithfully with God; then he was no more, because God took him away.” The same word for “walk” is used both here and in the passage about Adam, Eve and God. The Hebrew word, halak, isn’t a mysterious word. In fact, the word is very common—it appears over 1500 times in Scripture.
Although it may stretch the definition a bit, a modern translation of the word would be “chillin’. Increasingly, I’m coming to the conclusion that prayer is another way of saying, “chillin’ with the Almighty.” Although it can include formalized prayer with a concluding “amen,” it really means walking and talking with God. Chillin’.
Back in the day, I used to lead the music team at church. I realized that leading the team meant singing with one eye open and one eye closed. I led with one eye open, meaning I monitored the music team and the congregation at worship, and then made the adjustments needed. But at the same time, I led with one eye closed, meaning If I was worshiping God, the congregation would likely follow.
Chillin’ with the Almighty is like that. It’s kind of like walking with one eye open and one eye closed. I go about my day, but I also keep my other eye focused on the One who loves me.
So the next time someone asks you what you’ve been doing all day, and if you’ve been walking with God, just respond by saying, “Oh, just chillin’”.