Yes, God is immanent. He is all around us. Yet, as Jacob reveals, we can be so unaware.
In Genesis 28:16 Jacob has this revelation that God was in a place that he was unaware of. This seems a little crazy since one of the principle beliefs in Christianity is that God is omnipresent.
Yet, how much are we like Jacob. So unaware of the actual presence of God.
A.W. Tozer (yep, still working through “The Pursuit of God”) states:
“God’s promise of self-revelation is literally true, that He promised much, but no more than He intends to fulfill. Our pursuit of God is successful just because He is forever seeking to manifest Himself to us.”
I laugh at that first part, “God’s promise of self-revelation is literally true”… it seems that we have to remind ourselves that yes, God does want to reveal Himself to us. Another quote:
“Why do some persons ‘find’ God in a way that others do not? Why does God manifest His presence to some and let multitudes of others struggle along in the half-light of imperfect Christian experience? Of course, the will of God is the same for all. He has no favorites within His household. All He has ever done for any of His children He will do for all of His children. The difference lies not with God but with us.”
Of course Paul encountered the Lord, he was Paul!! As if that is the reason. I too put myself in this category that I’ll only be able to encounter the Lord in the portion he’s given me. I won’t be able to encounter the Lord like Paul, David, John and Abraham. Yet, it isn’t the Lord that puts this restraint on me, it’s myself.
“Something in them was open to heaven, something which urged them Godward… they had spiritual awareness and that they went on to cultivate it until it became the biggest thing in their lives. They differed from the average person in that when they felt the inward longing they did something about it. They acquired the lifelong habit of spiritual response.”
The capacity to encounter the Lord and experience Him is the same in Paul as it is in you and me. It is just what we do with that capacity. Am I stretching it to its max or am I barely working it at all? For me, usually it’s the latter. I haven’t trained myself to become aware and to respond. Instead I let it pass and wait till the show is over or till I have time, or till I’m not so tired.
But in reading this, how much of me desires to be one that does something about it…