"…for he endured as seeing him who is invisible." (Hebrews 11:27)
When do you most feel like you have been in the presence of God? I guess if I were a more spiritual person, I might respond, "late at night while I am praying." Sadly, for me, that is not usually the case.
I'm not shooting here for creepy organ music and goosebumps. I am pretty sure that there is not some mystical experience awaiting me around the corner. It is tiresome at times dealing with the superstition, the confusing of ritual with rebirth, the emotionalism attributed to the Holy Spirit, the expectation of some overpowering manifestation that would nudge one over the line into saving faith.
Having said that, I confess that there have been moments when I have felt -dare I say it- a bit like Moses in the presence of God on Mt. Sinai; moments that instill me with a desire to endure as a servant of God; moments that come to those who surrender their lives, as the Apostle Paul did, for the sake of the Gospel.
"I do it all for the sake of the gospel, that I may share with them in its blessings." (1 Corinthians 9:23)
In our natural state, we are so frightfully pathetic, weak, self-destructive, and yet, so wise in our own eyes! We are well read; we consider our doubting questions about the Bible to be intelligent; our skepticism about the existence of God seems well-informed.
"If anyone imagines that he knows something, he does not yet know as he ought to know." (1 Corinthians 8:2)
Add to that an inherent blindness regarding spiritual things: we look right at the truth but we do not see it; we listen to words about God but we do not hear Him; we embrace the forms and symbols of religion but we confuse them with the genuine article; we have the Bible, but the Bible does not have us.
" No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day. " (John 6:44) Truer words...
Suddenly, the odyssey from Pontius Pilate's "What is truth?" (John 18:38) to the Philippean jailor's "What must I do to be saved?" (Acts 16:30) takes on Homeric proportions, requiring divine intervention at every turn.
So, is it any wonder, then? For months, I accompany someone whose journey begins in skepticism. They approach me today in their moment of saving faith. The urgency, simple faith, open heart, humility, reverence and joy... could God's presence ever be more palpable?
More than any others, these are the moments that help me to endure…
"...as seeing him who is invisible."
Greg was raised near Milwaukee, WI. He has lived outside of the United States since 1976... first in Central America and, since 1982, in Cancun, Mexico.
Concise devotions in Spanish and English, along with some lengthier essays… Designed for personal spiritual growth and to help anyone studying English or Spanish as a second language to improve their skills… Rev 14:6
To highlight one essential facet of the eternal Gospel of Jesus Christ... Rev 14:6; 2 Cor. 5:18
THANK YOU FOR READING!
"For I have derived much joy and comfort from your love, my brother, because the hearts of the saints have been refreshed through you." Philemon 1:7
Refreshing the Bones by Greg Smith is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.