:: Monday, December 13, 2004 ::
Presence of God
Steve has been asking people about their experience with the presence of God.
I left this in his comments:
"How have you experienced the presence of God" was a question I used to ask incoming members of our Christian fraternity in college. At that time, I approached the question from a distinctively Baptist/Pentecostal background. This meant powerful revelations during prayer, speaking in tongues, exorcism, miracles.
As I've continued my journey, this has become more nuanced. An example: A year ago on Good Friday, I was serving in an American Episcopal Church [Anglican Communion]. All incense had ceased for the entirety of Lent. The smell, by Good Friday, had largely vacated. Most of the decoration had been removed as well. As the service began, we came in silently, dressed all in black. The priest, deacon and I all lay prostrate on the floor near the altar, in front of the cross. As we lay on the brick, I realized that I could still smell the residual incense if my face was up against the brick floor. I got the sense that God was saying, "I'm still here. I'm returning. I will rise again."
And, just like that, we stood up, and the priest said, "Blessed be our God."
And we answered, "Forever and ever, Amen."
Somehow both of these contexts describe my experience of the presence of God: sometimes overtly powerful, other times more subtly so. Somehow the later experiences are harder to describe: to tell it does not do it justice.
:: Matt 12/13/2004 01:01:00 PM :: permalink ::