Recently I gave a talk at our church on the omnipresence of God. I wanted people to be caught up in the truth that He is everywhere regardless of our behaviour. That He is omnipresent is a basic Christian concept repeated throughout the Bible.

“In him we live, move and have our being.” Acts 17:28

Despite our basic acceptance of this truth our lives outlived often tell another story. We think that greater worship sets attract Him or fervent prayer when combined with fasting is a secret recipe for Gods manifest presence. Or perhaps if our repentance is regular and deep enough He can’t resist but to bless us with a show of His Glory.

In truth it’s a load of superstitious garbage.

“Do I not fill the heavens and the earth?” declares the Lord. Jeremiah 23:24

After the service I was amazed at the feedback that came as people thanked me for sharing. Although I worked long and hard at delivering my talk I couldn’t help but be aware that it was not my delivery that touched people, but the content of the message. The scent of freedom wooed people from the chains of burdensome religious activity.

Christian Voodoo

I once heard a wise man say that pentecostal trends and practices seem attractive at first: 24 hour prayer, 21 day fasts, Bible memorisation, flags and banners, extended worship, longer and more frequent church services (please not), prayer walks, declarations… and the list continues. Yet as time goes by what once gave us our ‘intimacy fix’ soon becomes burdensome. These practices begin to rule the conscience of the believer.

It’s certainly not that any of these practices are evil. They are good. Yet we very quickly turn them into works; good works. Idols. They become our ticket to peace with God and our Christian voodoo used when we feel distant and dry. Soon we’re chasing them with a fear that perhaps God won’t commune with us otherwise or fear that our spiritual reception bars are running low.

Such practices are the fruit of our response to God, not our ladder to Him.

The eyes of the lord are in every place. Proverbs 15:3

Our daily lives soon begin to echo the fear of abandonment we live in. Does He love me? Has He left me? Is He on my side? If we feel a lack of Gods presence or a lack of intimacy we begin to seek the restoration process. More prayer. More church. More devotion.

Friends it simply doesn’t work. Your faith that He is present is a gift to help you connect anywhere, any time. Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross was enough to reconnect us with God, all we are given to do is accept the gift of his sacrifice. We have a connection 24/7. He is everywhere.

When you ‘sin’ He’s there. When you shower He’s there. When you take the dog for a walk He’s there. He’s in the oxygen inhaled by the atheist and the gentle sea breeze exhaled by the ocean. He’s overshadowing Mt. Everest and bathing in the depths of the sea.

Where can I flee from your presence? Psalm 139:7

C. Baxter Kruger in his book ‘The Secret’ writes as follows: “Immanuel.”  That is God’s one word summary of it all. You know what “Immanuel” means, don’t you? It means “God is with us.” Note carefully that it does not mean God was with us or that God will be with us. It means God is with us and we are with God. This is not a neat religious idea. And it is certainly not an invitation that depends upon our religious performance. Immanuel is a rock-solid fact established by God. It is a divine declaration of the way things really are. God has not abandoned us. He has embraced us and made us His in Jesus Christ.

Awareness

Our faith may need a remodelling. For so many of us we have believed He shows up only when we practice our Christian voodoo incantations. But He’s already there. We don’t need another breakthrough in worship but a breakthrough in our awareness of Him.

Let’s learn to be aware.

Sure I know what you’re thinking, some places carry atmospheres. Some places manifest Gods presence and some don’t. Yet to manifest simply means to show. To show what already is! Our faith and response to His ever dwelling presence is enough to change an atmosphere. When people have faith it creates the channel for others to experience Him there.

Heaven and the highest heaven cannot contain you. 1 Kings 8:27

The truth is you can experience Him in a Mosque, in a church, a bakery, or your great grandmothers bathroom. He’s everywhere. Even the demons exist in His presence.

Welcome to Christianity as it was always intended to be. An effortless connection with an ever present God who made every effort on your behalf. Enjoy the simplicity of drinking in His presence wherever, whenever.

“Do I not fill the heavens and the earth?” Jeremiah 23:24

Everyone Everywhere

Social standing, gender, religion, race or nationality are all irrelevant due to His death on the cross. Yes even the atheist is welcome to meet the Great Father if he wishes to. If you’re human, you’re welcome! Jesus took care of it for you.

There is no need to slave away at good works, working your way up the imaginary Grace Achievement Ladder. Prayer, Repentance and Worship are not bargaining chips to salvation or connecting with God, they are a response to His connection with us.

Do you get it? I know you’re probably skim reading through this with a vague idea of what I’m saying, but maybe take some time to read it again slowly. As you do so feel free to wrestle with the implications of an omnipresent God. It will change your faith. You are as close to your skin as you are to the sweet caress of the Holy Spirit.

Enjoy. It’s free.

For I am convinced that… [nothing] in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:38-39

No more shame and guilt for failing at your religious mantras. He’s there and His love is all around you. In all this talk of omnipresence I haven’t touched something even greater; His presence inside the believer. Let’s save that topic for another day.

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