Well, God is continuing to throw reminders of His Love in my path. This past week, on my lunch break, I headed over to the city library. I’ve never been to this particular branch before, and as I asked someone where the non-fiction section was, I was pleasantly surprised to find that I was lead right to the religious section. As I looked at the books, I saw a familiar title that I had read years ago; “The God Chasers” by Tommy Tenney. Below the title it reads “My Soul Follows Hard After Thee”. I quickly grabbed it and said, “Yes, God, another book about getting more of you in me, more of your presence, not your “presents”, what an appropriate book for the holidays! As I have previously bloggged; I have indeed experience the Amazing Love and Presence of God in my Life where it left me immovable at times, to feeling so much power that I begged for Him to let up a bit. It was a very beautiful time and very much a realization of The Almighty Power that He beholds. I am sure, as powerful of what I felt, it was only a micro-measurement of the power that He has. The book “The God Chasers” is very much where my heart is and very much where I want to see people get to. I think the most frustrating part of being a Christian at times is to experience The Power and Love of God in this way, and not be able to share it with other Christians. Not everyone gets it. It’s not that it is not available to them, but people just don’t want to “Let Go and Let God”. People don’t truly want to live surrendered. I found this out recently when I and another friend shared our stories and opened up to each other. I remember this person replying to my openness, “that is scary to let go and trust, I don’t know if I am ready to do that”. It was a real and sort of upsetting reality that even those who you’d think know the Power and The Love, very well may not. It made me sit back and realize how far away from the face of God “The Church” has become. The thing I love about this book, it that Tommy Tenney, doesn’t just help us understand that we all need to die to ourselves to truly experience the presence of God, but we as churches need to also let go of our formalities of doing church, and creating programs that came many times feed into our egos instead of our growth. People are hungry in this world for the True Bread of Life. People want to see the face of God, but when they enter our churches, they see empty shelves, maybe a few bread crumbs on the floor. They leave empty and don’t come back. It’s so true. I have struggled with this at church too. There are times when I want to just stand up and worship during a song or an offering, but don’t because everyone else is sitting. Deep inside I still want to “fit in”, but by doing that I know that I am limiting the work of God in my life, I am putting my light under a bushel. I have been praying for God to change that in me, as I continue to do my best to surrender those fears and perceptions. I know that we truly need to die to live. In Exodus 33:20 God reminds us that “But you may not see my face. No one can see me and live”. This Old Testament verse is very true today too, unless “we die”, unless we give all our hurts, fears, phobias…to God, we can never truly see His face; We can never truly live, and experience all that He wants us to. “The God Chasers” is filled with Biblical example after example of this. It really makes allot of stuff make sense, and it makes me want to go and read more of the Old Testament because I can finally “see” some of these storries in their true light. Before I experienced the presence of God, I went through some major emotional and spiritual pain and anguish. I died. It hurt, really bad, but it was This Death, This Complete Surrender that brought God’s presence into my life, into my heart, and into my whole being. His love pour in and overflowed out, all I wanted to do was either stay in it, or find a way to run out and give it all away. That’s what True love does. I know this post is getting long; it’s just allot of my heart coming out. So let me just encourage you all to go and read this book. It will help to remind you of the relationship God truly wants to have with all of us. May it inspire you to seek His face not His hand, and to desire true intimacy with Him,; and that it would spread out among our churches and into the lives of others in our communities and our world.
“We need to seek brokenness and repentance, and say by or actions as well as our words “God we want YOU”, “We don’t care if you do anything or not, we are crawl ling up onto the alter. Let your Fire of Cleansing fall so we can finally see your face” “We want intimacy with you God, for we are your Bride” Don’t date God, put on the ring of commitment. God is looking for a Bride, not a girlfriend; one who will stick with Him. It is intimacy with God that will bring revival that we hunger for; but we must surrender and consistently draw near. “I am going to Pursue the Presence of Go!” I want to carry the fragrance of my father with me”. Tenney, Starts Chapter 7 with a prayer, and it is this prayer that I would like to end this post. I pray that you will desire true intimacy with your creator and learn to live surrendered for Him. I know it’s scarry, I know it will hurt, but I also know that it is the only thing that will bring true change to our hearts, our lives, our churches and our communities. I hope you read this book and I pray that it will change you forever. In this Christmas Season, let us truely only desire the Present of His Presence!
“Father, we thank You for Your presence. Lord, the air is just pregnant with possibility and we sense Your nearness. But we must say that You are not near enough. Come, Holy Spirit. If not now, when? If not us, who? And if not here, where? Just tell us, Lord, and we’ll go; we will pursue Your presence becasue we want You, Lord. Your presence is what we are after and nothing less will do”.