What does it mean to experience God? I Google-ed it just now – at some risk – and got a lot of well-meaning stuff. I rolled my eyes at most of it!
Personally, I don’t want to experience God’s blessings, or even His power for that matter. I just want to experience Him.
I come to this with the following “baggage”:
- I believe I can experience God.
- I believe the experience of God is a good thing. In fact, I believe it to be the main thing – the first thing.
- I believe God deeply desires for us to experience Him.
- I believe my tendency is to experience God in order to get something. I must proceed with caution, because I believe in experiencing God I do get something.
- I believe the world has clouded my mind on experiencing God, making me a consumer and someone who is, in the words of C.S. Lewis, “far too easily pleased.”
- I believe there are many, many miss-understandings about the experience of God. I believe there are many “experience” counterfeits. I believe the church desperately feels the need to teach on experiencing God, the same churches whose teachers no little on the subject.
- I believe there are people who genuinely experience God – and on a level I have not yet … experienced.
- I do not believe experiencing God is complicated or hard to achieve in some sense.
- I believe the evil one is very threatened by God’s children truly seeking to experience God.
- I believe experiencing God demands patience, trust, perseverance, and faith – a faith that is willing to resist tagging an emotionally charged moment or a pleasurable gas pain as the experience of God. I believe God calls all the shots when it comes to experiencing Him.
- I believe we most likely experience Him more than we think we do, and in many diverse ways.
- I believe God rewards us when we seek an experience of Him.
- I believe the experience of God is primarily with the heart. Surely, though, the mind, the emotions and the physical are somehow “involved.”
- I really believe we experience God when we are still and alone. I believe this because the world – whose god is the evil one - is so noisy and congested.
- I believe my experience of God pays a dividend in the lives of my friends.
- I believe in a God generous and lavish with His love.
- I believe the experience of God defies definition and quantifying. Certainly there is no recipe/formula nor are there x number of steps to experiencing God. Yet, I believe we must do something in order to experience God.
- I believe grace needs to be mentioned in any conversation about the experience of God. I believe God is Sovereign, and that we have responsibility.
- I believe extreme caution and humility must accompany any conversation about the experience of God since we are so prone to impose our own idea systems on them. I believe it is a good thing to talk about the experience of God.
- I believe human relationships to be a context as well as a metaphor for the experience of God.
- I believe prayer is a central component in experiencing God.
- I believe experiencing God can be a corporate thing.
- I believe experiencing God not to be a “holy grail,” in that it is some monumental “goal.” God is our destination, our goal, and followers of Christ have this in the “already” category.
- Somehow, and finally but not exhaustively, I believe I will “know” it – sense it – when I do experience God. But, admittedly, I have very little to say on this subject.