This morning I thought about how I sense God’s presence. And what I hear others to process through to determine “His presence.”. So much of what we try to accomplish is without our “God filter” or the understanding that comes from a renewed mind.
Years ago as I “pastored” a church fellowship, I heard people say when confronted with a task or situation, “I am waiting until I feel lead.” So true to my “pastoral nature” I brought a large chunk of lead from a rock and mineral store and when they would say something like that I would push it towards them, suggest “they feel lead” and get on with their life. But when people operate by their 5 natural senses, this process is more than just funny, it is actually prophetic in nature. Satisfy the sensory need and the body can follow.
In my book on interrupted process, I have taken the 5 senses both in the natural and the supernatural and evaluated them from the perspective of process.
In our natural there are many things we deal with that we pick response statements like “fight or flight” in response to being startled or fearing. In 9/11 the natural tendency was to go back. Many died because of this thinking as they returned to the then untouched north tower. I said to my wife, “sometimes you just need to ‘panic’ and get out of there.” We use statements like “seeing is believing” and counter it with “do not believe everything you see.” (Do you believe everything you see or not? The answer is yes.)
In the natural I hear sounds and can gain direction of something moving or determine what is being said. (I may or may not understand it. I can hear Japanese being spoken but may not know what is being said.) I can touch a stove and sense heat, triggering a response to remove my hand.
God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth. John 4:24 Old teachings would suggest that one must be “in the spirit” grabbed from an old covenant perspective, but I am in Him and He in me. BUT, I must wrap my mind around the fact that I am not just a “human being” but I am a spiritual being. So my approach is different. My thinking is different.
How do I “taste and see that the Lord is good,”? (Psalm 34:8) In the natural I think I might suggest it is impossible. Eat my flesh, drink…John 6:56 How does one do that? We cannot just throw everything into an allegorical milkshake.
In my life, I have sensed God’s presence through touch. I have felt Him show up so powerfully that I understand Paul when he says, “And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead” Revelation 1:17 I have heard on 5 occasions the audible voice of God. I have seen Jesus show up early in my walk while driving to a daughter’s spelling bee. Sitting in my car! I have smelled a sweetness show up in places I have been acknowledging His presence. (Others did as well.) Taste-honestly I am not sure what that would like, other than reading His word (John 1:14 “the Word made flesh took up his tabernacle in our midst.”) and devouring it.
BUT, there is a spiritual sensing that comes from a renewed mind. As my friend pointed out yesterday, “I do not see with my eyes, but I see through my eyes.” My mind processes the image. My mind is making mental shifts, adjustments and more to get the “answers.” Nor do I hear with my ears but through them processing what I hear by my mind.
What I believed as a child I often do not believe now, because my mind matured, became educated. It is the same way with the process of renewing one’s mind. (Romans 12:2) We are not educating it, though that is some of the process, but we are causing it to view what is seen, heard, touched, tasted and smelled with a different processor.
The same sensor that senses heat can feed that information to one computer and get the air conditioner to turn on BUT to another processor (or brain) it may be that it is not “hot enough.” People died in the north tower in 9/11 because their natural thinking was to run back to shelter because that was another tower. Had they overcome and not gone back to get wallets, computers, et cetera, they would not have perished as the second plane hit the north tower, but would have been at ground level escaping the zone of destruction.
Many things in the kingdom of God do not “make sense” to the natural understanding, which means without a renewed mind we are operating in a spiritual reality with a natural mindset. Much of the confusion the Pharisees and the religious ilk of the day encountered was they could only carry the teachings of Jesus at the natural level. They were encountering a spiritual “sensory deprivation.” Their natural senses were being deprived because their inability was being stopped at the mind’s level. They were not just in need of an upgrade, but they needed a whole new operating system in the new computer.
It is much like a car going to compete in an airshow. It can have a motor, wheels and more; all those things that are similar to a plane, but its ability to soar is not there. It needs to be a plane. And only then can it truly compete.
Many may remember the story by Hans Christian Andersen of the “ugly duckling” that was really a swan. It was legally a swan but was raised by ducks. One day it saw who it truly was, a beautiful swan. Many are thinking they are filthy, unrighteous, faithless believers and yet they really are legally bought and paid for and are “swans” yet without a renewed mind they live in isolation from the goodness of His giving.
Stop looking to “feel” something in God for that is the natural or carnal experience. Begin to identify with who you are and allow a renewed mind to change your understanding of what your sensors provide. His presence. his truth.