By Love Transformed, by R.T. Kendall

Want to receive By Love Transformed by email? Sign up here

Experiencing God's Presence

You will fill me with joy in your presence. —Psalm 16:11

The manifestation of God's presence can be unveiled in more than one way.

Jacob felt the presence of God at Bethel, and he was afraid (Gen. 28:17). For some there is a bias in the direction of the fear of God, which, to them, proves that God is present. Some people are even uneasy with joy. Fear is their comfort zone. They have a ready-made theological rationale for not smiling and looking sad instead. When we don't have much joy, we can hide behind the convenient view that God's glory always produces a sense of fear. That feeling of awe was what people experienced as a result of a healing presence in Galilee (Luke 5:17, 26). They felt this immediately after Pentecost (Acts 2:43).

The angel of the Lord said to the shepherds, "I bring you good news of great joy" (Luke 2:10). As a result of Philip's preaching in Samaria, "there was great joy in that city" (Acts 8:8).

We must try to remain open to the manner in which God chooses to manifest His glory. We can become so firmly entrenched in our specific comfort zone that we fail to recognize the presence of God. At the end of the day, it is impossible to describe adequately the feeling of God's special presence—however it is manifested.

The special presence of God is greater than anything said about it. But you won't miss it if you haven't experienced it. And you can believe it's still present after it has departed. Yesterday's memory of His presence and today's expectancy that it will be present can make you think God is present when He isn't. It is an easy mistake to make.

This is why we should want to be more and more sensitive to the Spirit. As we are more and more sensitive to Him, we will more quickly recognize God's special presence—and His absence.

Excerpted from The Sensitivity of the Spirit (Charisma House, 2002).

Your Turn

Comment Guidelines
View/Add Comments
  • Hillary Clinton

    What if Hillary Clinton Wins the White House?

    Polls have Mrs. Clinton leading by 11 points. The church must be prepared.

  • Holy Spirit prophetic

    7 Ways to Cultivate Sensitivity to the Holy Spirit

    Too many of God's people are led by fear, doubt, man-pleasing, presumption, assumption, idols ...

  • What if You Could Save $500 This Week?

    What if You Could Save $500 This Week?

    Start saving for emergencies today with the $500 Savings Challenge by brightpeak financial. It's chock-full of inspiration, great savings tips and the motivation to make a dent in your savings—for real! Go to 500savingschallenge.com to sign up!

  • Jezebel puppets

    10 Ways to Spot Jezebel's Spiritually Slick Undercover Con Artists

    It's time to stop tolerating Jezebel in all its many manifestations.

  • Highway exit signs

    Prophetic Word: Watch for the Exit Signs to Light Up This Season

    Don't be afraid to get your hands dirty in the harvest fields. The "barnyard anointing" ...

  • Finger pointing

    The Accuser vs. Donald Trump—and Us All

    This isn't a political persuasion piece, but a current-event case study in the strategies of ...

  • Lance Wallnau

    Lance Wallnau Is on Fire and on Target With His Insights on the Culture and This Election

    I'm sickened by the self-righteous, weak-kneed "evangelicals" who want to be liked by ...

  • Daily scripture reading, meditation and prayer can seem elusive with your busy schedule.

    10 Small Steps to Deeper Intimacy With Holy Spirit in Your Quiet Times

    If deep quiet times seem just out of your reach with your busy schedule, try one of these ...

  • In October, many things will be realigned in your life, including your vision.

    5 Prophetic Revelations About God's October Surprise

    "The winds of apostolic change are blowing across the land and realigning you."

  • Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Follow God on the most fulfilling journey of your life with Encounter the Holy Spirit! Break away from past hurts and press into the One who wants a personal encounter with you.

  • Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Reach your full potential and be led by His Spirit. In His Presence takes you to a deeper understanding of who God is and how he communicates with us.

  • Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Receive the power and gifts that come through the Holy Spirit Baptism. Don’t go empty-handed; accept all that He has for you! His power is available to those who ask.

  • Put on the Full Armor of God

    Put on the Full Armor of God

    Break every stronghold with the power of the Holy Spirit. Use the power of your tongue to declare and decree the Word of God. Witness heaven move on your behalf.

Use Desktop Layout
Charisma Magazine — Empowering believers for life in the Spirit