I was coming out of the grocery store the other day when I saw two young men soliciting funds for a Christian ministry. I almost passed them by until I noticed their eyes. There was a sparkle there that grabbed my attention*. And just like that, I was in the presence of the Lord. I heard His voice prompting me to give to the ministry; but also, to encourage the young men that the light of Christ shines through them. It was a lovely moment. I marveled at how I could be busy with life’s mundane tasks one minute, and feel the overwhelming power of His presence the next.
A few easy steps
It’s so easy to lose a sense of the presence of God when we’re busy with the stuff of life. God can certainly intervene with you as He did with Me, but you don’t have to wait for Him. Take a step or two in His direction, and you’ll find Him running to you like the father ran to his prodigal son.
And he arose and came to his father. But when he was still a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him.Luke 15:20
What steps can you take to get back into His presence? Here’s what works for me:
- Take a double dose of the best medicine.
Psalm 100:4 tells us to enter His gates with thanksgiving and come into His courts with praise. Perhaps you think of this as a command: When you enter His courts you’re supposed to thank and praise Him. But I like to think of it more like a holy prescription: Take a dose of thanks and praise and you’ll enter His courts! Thank Him for what He’s done and praise Him for who He is. That’s the surest way I know to get transported into His sweet presence.
- Stop doing and start being.
To walk in deeper intimacy with Him, you must learn the power of being with Him as opposed to doing for Him. You may call it meditating, or soaking, or going to your quiet place. No matter how you frame it, it means letting go of the things of this world so you can relax in His arms. Music can help you get to this restful place. I’m not talking about energetic praise here, but about the kind of music that draws you heavenward. My current favorite is the album Caught Up by Kimberly and Alberto Rivera. What’s your go-to music for entering in? Share it with us so we can all get a boost!
- Practice love.
God is love. So, wherever you find love, you’ll find the presence of God. If you haven’t read 1 Corinthians 13 lately, have a look. This beautiful chapter tells us that love’s focus is not inward. Love looks upward to God, then outward to others. If you’ve lost the sense of God’s nearness, ask Him to guide you to someone who needs a kind word, a helping hand, or an unexpected blessing. When you give to others, you invite His presence in a mighty way.
- Focus on grace.
You can dwell on what’s wrong with you, or you can focus on what’s wonderful about Him. And isn’t His grace, His willingness to forgive and forget your sins, the most spectacular thing about life in Christ? Hebrews 7:25 tells us that we’re saved to the uttermost. The Greek word for uttermost means saved completely, entirely, and through all time. In other words, you have His grace, FULL-STOP!
Therefore, He is also able to save to the uttermost those who come to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.Hebrews 7:25
- Remember the Holy Spirit.
When Jesus left this earth, He sent His Holy Spirit who is with us ALWAYS. If you’re feeling spiritually dulled, take time to think about the Spirit of God, the Spirit of Christ, the Holy Spirit who dwells with you and is in you. (If you don’t know God personally, start here.) When was the last time you asked for His guidance and help? He’s right there. Right with you. Right now.
I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, who will stay with you forever. He is the Spirit, who reveals the truth about God. The world cannot receive him, because it cannot see him or know him. But you know him, because he remains with you and is in you.John 14:16-17**
It’s the simple stuff
There’s nothing difficult about the suggestions above. But it’s the simple things we tend to lose sight of, isn’t it? My prayer for you today is that you’d take a step or two toward God. You have His assurance that when you do, He will come running.
Our pursuit of God is successful just because He is forever seeking to manifest Himself to us.A.W. Tozer
*Jesus said that our eyes are like our body’s lamp. They reflect either the light or the darkness that’s in us. (Matt. 6:22-23)
**Good News Translation® (Today’s English Version, Second Edition) ©1992 American Bible Society. All rights reserved.