Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The Presence of God

I (Ben) am reading through "Your God Is Too Safe" by Mark Buchanan and thoroughly enjoying it. With having a family and a busy schedule I don't necessarily read a lot or all the time but when I do find/make the time I'm always so exited.

All that to say after coming home last night from playing Cities & Nights (and winning!) with my boys I found that even though it was already late I was still bursting with excitement and found myself not being able to sleep, or maybe it was that coffee I had... So all I could do was stay up and read. Right now with being in a not so comfortable life (living overseas is NOT comfortable...) and with having some hard times this year I still find myself enjoying being in the presence of God. And you say "of course you feel God in the midst of hard times!" and yes I agree, but most of my God moments up to this point with God have been in good/great times! I sit here and can't help but think of my brother Chris who once told me that "God is more real to him then his left hand" and some times I agree. Sometimes I can't just NOT think, feel & breath in God. The Psalmist rights

"Where can I go from your Spirit?
Where can I flee from your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
If I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
If I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me,
your right hand will hold me fast."
(Psalm 139:7-10)

With this being so true why do I not feel this way all the time! Why do some think they don't feel the presence of God at all?

Mark rights... "The problem is not that God is distant and needs to be wooed or badgered into coming near' the problem is that God is ever present, ever near, and that some of us seek ways of escape. Where can I flee from Your presence? If God is here and here and here, when can I be myself and be by myself? The cleaving nearness of God becomes claustrophobic, a stifling humidness, a chafing boundedness.
God does not need to be invoked, we do. We need to be called to our senses, to be as present to God as God is to us. To stop running, stand still, breath in. "Rejoice in the Lord always," Paul says. "I will say it again: Rejoice!...the Lord is near" (Philippians 4:4-5). And then, on the basis of God's nearness, he calls us to pray (v. 6)
When we practice the presence of God, we will come to a point in our relationship with Him at which we walk in continual expectancy. Each moment brims with the possibility of encounter and discovery. We become conscious that each breath is given by Him, each word is spoken in His hearing.
We drive down the street, stand at the sink, pluck weeds from the garden, hammer nails into planks, hang clothes on a line, write a poem on a napkin. We preach, we pray, we sing, we weep. In all these things, God is present. Whether we notice Him or not is a matter of vision, attentiveness, alertness-practice."

I'm only 1/2 way through the chapter but find my self saying "Yes, Yes, Yes" as I read through this book and this chapter. God & His presence are SO real to me most of the time and I love this subject/area about God, but as Mark said sometimes we allow our lives or day to become so busy that we choose not to notice. But even though we sometimes don't notice Him, our huge God is still there.

How real is God to you? Do you feel His presence?


Jana said...
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jonnyboy said...

Hey Guys,

I tried to leave a comment but I was logged on with janalyn's account. Enjoyed reading your blog!