When I was fifteen and had not known the Lord Jesus for myself very long, but had great joy and faith in him, I asked him for a gift.
I asked to be a seer. That’s another name for a prophet, traditionally, but to me there’s a different nuance.
The word ‘prophet’ came into the English language in the Middle Ages from the Old French prophete. That arrived in France via Latin from the Greek prophētēs, which means ‘spokesman’, from pro ‘before’ + phētēs ‘speaker’ (from phēnai ‘speak’). ‘Before-speaking’ is obviously the same as ‘fore-telling’. So a prophet will either see ahead, or see deeply enough into present reality to identify in today the seeds of what will flower/fruit tomorrow.
Therefore seeing is an important component to being a prophet, but the foot falls on speaking. Speaking out is the essential task. Or maybe to be entirely accurate, there is an outbreath to prophecy, which is the foretelling (or forth-telling); but there’s also an inbreath, which is being called into the presence of God. Without time spent centred on the mystery of God’s presence, the prophet has no source of anything to say.
A seer is a little bit different. A seer may or may not say anything, but sees – notices. I didn’t aspire to any public role of proclamation, but I did want clear eyes to my spirit; so I asked to be a seer.
And in his grace, the Lord Jesus granted my wish. In fact, I can’t think of anything I’ve asked of him that he’s denied me. He is a generous master.
So, as a result, my life’s work has been noticing things. It’s what I do for a living. I notice how things are, and I write down what I’ve seen, in books and articles, and that pays my bills. The thing that people who enjoy my writing always say about it is that it is so real. ‘More real than the Velveteen Rabbit’ is the comment I have stowed in my heart and treasured above all. Where this reality makes it through, it is because of the gift the Lord Jesus gave me; to be a seer.
There’s a necessary discipline attached to noticing things. If life is cluttered and busy with a hectic environment and lots going on, it’s possible to notice only the loud and obvious. To notice the small and subtle, it’s necessary to get quiet and solitary and still. So that’s what I do.
I am always excited when I notice something new; when a thing comes to my attention that I’d entirely overlooked before – and that happened this morning.
As you know if you read here often, I think a lot about nutrition and health, about de-toxing and clarity of being; and I live in a shared house with four other adults.
Today I noticed something.
When we eat, we derive energy from food – calories, fuel, stuff to keep us going and build up our cells and give us strength for the day. Our food energises us. Without food we get weak and tired and eventually sick and, after a long time, dead.
In the morning, as we casually and intermittently happen to convene in the kitchen getting our juices and oatmeal and whatnot for breakfast, I often ask people what they will be doing today. What I really want to know (I realized today) is, will they be at home or working elsewhere.
Some days Alice and Hebe work at home (at the moment, for example, Alice is working in the studio here on a commission for a painted and gilded mirror), other days they will be going out (most days Hebe and often both of them go to the stonemasonry just over a mile away where they design and cut images and lettering for headstones). Fi is mostly based at home (as I am), but has tracts of time when she is away on other adventures or out at a recording studio for her work as a musician. The Badger is away in Oxford, three hours’ drive up-country, for half the week.
This morning I noticed something going on in my psyche that made my enquiry, as to where household members would be based that day, more important than just friendly interest.
To be a seer, when you notice something you have to pay attention to it, or it will slip out of the grasp of your noticing Eye, much as a dream fades and is forgotten if you don’t write it down after you wake up with it still vivid in your mind.
So, my attention caught, I looked carefully at the small soul movement I had detected, and realized something. I actually derive energy from the other members of my household – real energy, just the same as I get energy from food. When we are together here in this house, it’s like being fed small nutritious snacks all day long. Their vibrational presence constantly tops up my energy. When they are out, that energy is unavailable. So it helps to know in advance who’s in and who’s out, so I know if I am feasting or fasting today, and can be aligned with that expectation in my inner being.
I had never noticed this before. There are some people who drain my energy so much I feel quite desperate; I have to steady myself to wait patiently to get out of the sphere of their aura, not screaming or saying anything rude but just firmly disentangling from the strong urgent sucking of their spirit. My family is not like that. They are strong, clear souls who know how to stand balanced in their own space and keep focus. Being alongside them is peaceful and calming. They run like a mountain stream. I feel very privileged to live with them.
I was enabled to notice this today because I have been clearing, clearing, clearing; getting my life and being more streamlined, more prepared. I met with a friend (another seer) earlier this week – we meet up every few months to compare notes. What she is hearing is ‘Time is short’. What I am hearing is ‘Not long now’. Neither of us knows what imminent thing life is telling us about, but given the latest findings on climate change, I do wonder if what we are sensing is more than just personal. Whatever it is, I know that the best way to be ready for the unknown is clarity and simplicity. Travelling light, both internally and externally, gives the maximum flexibility and responsive choice. ‘Problems arise where things accumulate’*, so in my body, possessions, schedule, commitments and mind, I have been continuing to clear, clear, clear, in the hope of being the best seer I can be, as well as available, calm and compassionate as and when required.
Something else that came before my attention today stopped me in my tracks, as my soul whispered ‘Yes’:
*Quote: Toinette Lippe Nothing Left Over
** Image: FACEBOOK.COM/PHILGOODLIFE