Seeking God’s Manifest Presence

Sunday I shared with you my concern that we are missing the sense of God’s manifest presence in our church and that we must get it back.  We, like Moses in Exodus 33:15-16, must be so concerned about the presence of God in our midst that we are unwilling to go on without it.  I do not think that it is hard to see that our services and ministries have become dry and powerless.  The deeper question that I have had to wrestle with this week in my own life, however, is “Why is the presence of God missing in my life?”  My logic here is simple, how can I expect to experience God in the church if I am not experiencing Him personally.  The hard reality is that my devotional life has become cold, barren and formal.  Instead of meeting with God I have been going through the motions.  I have a form of godliness but deny the power thereof.  So how do I change?  What God has been showing me this week is that it starts with two issues.  First, it begins with dealing with sin.  The fact is that everyone of us struggle with sin and have our own favorite pet sins.  I have mine.  You have yours.  We need to do a thorough heart-searching and self-examination under the direction of the Holy Spirit.  We need to let HIm dig down into the depths of our souls to uproot and expose the selfish lusts and desires of our sinful nature.  We need to let Him show us the depths of our depravity so that we will be driven to Godly sorrow and repentance.  Second, we need to deal with the area of our affections.  One thing that I have been struggling with and I think many of you have as well is my affection and love towards Jesus.  In all of the business of doing ministry, I often forget that I my first responsbiity is to love Jesus more than anything else.  Sadly, I let other things, lesser things, unimportant things, come in a steal my affections from my first love.

I’d like to hear from you this week about what God is saying to you and the steps that you are taking to seek the manifest presence of God in your life.

One thought on “Seeking God’s Manifest Presence

  1. Hey Joe:
    Excuse my commenting on posts in a confused order. Isn’t this the real question. I don’t know if you have ever heard of a 30 minute “sermon jam” that originated with and is on sermonaudio called Revival Hymn. It is really moving. Leonard Ravenhill, Duncan Campbell (describing the revival on the Isle of Lewes), and some great out takes from Paris Reidhead. Reidhead is the dominant speaker in the last half. He makes some great observations mainly from a sermon on Judges 17 (It can be found under 10 Shekels and a Shirt). “You have to ask yourself very early in your Christian life, is God an end or a means?” “The Chinese Christian said ‘it is amazing what the American church can accompolish without God.” He has a great definition of “humanism” and how it relates to both “liberalism” and “fundamentalism.”

    I challenge all who read this blog to listen to both of them. If they don’t convict you, you are either living in perfection or spiritually blind.
    In Christ Alone,

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