Presence Present

I’ve experienced a encouraging and challenging time of teaching this week.Actually, for about 3 months the Lord has been truly nailing me about growing as a listener, speaking less, praying a great deal more than talking and in general, He has been moving in my life in very good ways. Not always easy to change but very good! So much of this is indeed in answer to my own prayers, specifically asking Him for He and I to move closer -which I know is His desire more than it even is mine. But it has been very good indeed.Have you noticed the ton of verses, and recognized the zillion times in your life when God “stepped out of the shadows” and showed up in such a way that for anyone to say “That’s just coincidence” brought laughter out of you?Over my walk with Jesus He has shown Himself present with me so often and in so many deep and (certainly to me) convincing ways that it almost goes beyond faith to a rock-solid realization that “in Him we live and move and have our being” as Paul quoted a non-Christian poet to a people he was sharing with (Book of Acts).Omnipresence. Immediate presence. Manifest or not, by the way! Sometimes felt, sometimes not, but always “I am WITH you even to the end of the age” and “I will NEVER leave you or forsake you” and “where can I flee from Your presence? If I make my bed in hell behold You are there, if I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea” and on and on and on God speaks of the reality of His presence with us.Brother Lawrence (they wrote a book about him after he’d died called “The Practice of the Presence of God”) had it right.And then I think of the many nights I’ve prayed the Celtic prayers of the daily office (see Northumbrian Community online, especially the last prayers of the day- “Compline”) which are rich with words relating to His immediate and constant, yes, continual presence.While I cannot (nor should anyone) live merely out of their emotions, there is something of that yet deeper than emotion and endorphins regarding the immediate presence of God. God the Holy Spirit meshed with my spirit.He really, truly, IS. “I Am”. And “I Am” is “Emmanuel, which being interpreted means ‘God WITH us”.A good part of this week and even the past 3 months for me has been laced with reminders, all on His part, intentional while at times so was I… and sometimes not :)Today I had a bit of “homework reading” and very much enjoyed the reminder that one can and should seek and sense God through music, quiet places, walks in the woods and etc., not because He somehow “specially meets us” in these, but because when we are out of our normal element, the day-to-day spaces and situations, it can at times be a bit easier to get into a mode of discovery. Perhaps I should say “sensory focus as opposed to sensory overload.”Discovering God (a book, concept and various teachings have focused on this) is of course a large part of receiving His love and loving Him back. A journey rather than destination, at least in this life.The process of relationship, deeper, closer, love rather than “duty” or “works”-based relationship is certainly His desire for each of His children.Nice. Sweet. True. Very good indeed. Very God of Very God. Present. HALLELULIA, Present!!And that’s what He seems to be “up to” in me at the moment 🙂

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