How to have experiential encounter with God
How to connect intimately with God?
What is it like to be saturated with God's presence? When we are drenching (soaking) and fully filled with the indwelling Jesus within us, there is no place for unrighteousness nor a foothold of evil.
I can imagine how it feels like the rocks being soaked with the waves everytime the water splashes on it.
Resting ourselves in the presence of God through His Word and learning how to live on it and applying it practically in our lives is a lifelong process. As said by Joseph M. Stowell in “Experiencing Intimacy with God” that pursuit of intimacy is an intentional commitment to take steps toward God and, in the process of that Godward motion, to grow more deeply conscious of, connected to, and confident in Him alone as the only source to satisfy, sustain, and secure. It is a process in that it is a lifelong adventure with increasing measures of satisfaction and meaning. It is also a commitment to actively apply the principles that God has given us and to patiently and persistently build our lives around them.
These principles include:
- a repentant turnaround in attitude and action;
- a repudiation of self-sufficiency that leads to a radical reliance on Christ;
- a conscious connecting in ongoing communication; and
- a connecting with Him in creation, in His character and conduct, in worship and praise, in crisis, and in faithful obedience.
Being intimate with God and seeking his face is where we are in a place of complete surrender to a work that only the Lord can do in us. John Belt describes soaking to be similar to going in for surgery. The doctor puts you under with an anesthetic and while you are at rest, he completes a work in you. There is no fear when you are under anesthetic and there is no fear when you rest in the Secret Place of God’s love (cf. Proverbs 1:33).
When we are thoroughly saturated or soaked with the presence of the Holy Spirit things happen like miracles, transformation and most of all that experiential encounter with God.
God's word is very clear when He said: "Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all of your heart." (Jer. 29:12-13 NKJV)
God is interested in the motive of our hearts though He already knew our intentions but He still wants to hear us say it.
How can we encounter God experientially?
God requires and imparts a frame of mind that receives and responds to what he has made known. He commanded that his word be heeded.
Repentance, faith and obedience are the keys to fully respond to God's revelation and experience a realy encounter with him.
It is a deep intimacy with God, resting in Him and be drunk with the presence of the Holy Spirit as we let God work in us for a complete transformation.
When we are saturated with the power of God through His Holy Spirit---we not only rest in Him but our body, soul, and spirit are one with Him.
How God reveals Himself
God graciously makes himself known to humanity since people cannot discover him on their own.He achieves this in many ways, but supremely through his son the Lord Jesus Christ.
God reveals himself in many ways
- In the Scriptures (Ps 119:105; 2Tim 3:16; 2 Pet 1:19-21;)
- By the Holy Spirit (Eph 1:17; John 14:26;)
- Supremely in Jesus Christ (Heb 1:1-2; Jn 1:18; Jn 8:26; Jn 12:49; Jn 14:10; Jn 17:6)
- In the creation
- Through the prophets
- In visIons and dreams
- face to face (encounter-more like what Moses had)
- In the exodus
- In the special signs
To me, knowing God is not only in reading about Him and His character from the scriptures of what was written about Him by the prophets but to experience His greatness, His love, His mercy, and His grace. That is to experience His presence and power. The teachings in the Bible say that to know God is to be transformed by Him.
We can only know God if we really seek Him with all our hearts and the Holy Spirit revealed Himself to us. It is only through God's revelation that we will really encounter the full knowledge of experiencing who really God is and that is by having that personal awareness of Him as well as our personal interaction and relationship with Him.
God's self-revelation in Jesus Christ is when he reveals Jesus Christ true identity as it says in Matt 3:17 "And a voice from heaven said," This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased."
Jesus Christ is the visible image of God -Col 1:15 says "The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation." Other Scriptures Heb 1:3; 2 Cor 4:4; Philippians 2:6.
How to be transformed?
How to be transformed? Repentance is the keyword-when you repent the fire of the Holy Spirit will revive us personally and personal transformation will occur.The Apostle Paul wrote to the Christians in Rome not to be conformed from the pattern of this world: "Don't copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God's will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect."(Rom 12:2 NLT)
The hard part in Christian transformation is the renewing of the mind. There are strongholds within ourselves that are hard to purge out by ourselves. Yet, transformation is not a human effort but it is the grace of God.
Maintaining our vertical relationship with God, and continue to wait on Him drenched ourselves with His presence, in the process will really change our mindset. In the book of Galatians Apostle Paul was saying: "It doesn't matter whether we have been circumcised or not. What counts is whether we have been transformed into a new creation.(Galatians 6:15 NLT)
Holy Bible-NKJV-(with illustrations-Thomas Kincaid)
Joseph M. Stowell booklet-"Experiencing Intimacy with God"
John Belt- video (you tube-soaking in the presence of God)