Be with God.

Church two Sundays ago was about experiencing the presence of God. Through an extended time of worship, prayer, confession, declarations, and ministering to one another, we cultivated in ourselves the closeness of children coming to the Father.

While service on Sunday was powerful, the question inevitably comes afterward:

How do we cultivate the presence of God in our daily lives?

Sometimes the options are too numerous. There are too many answers. Read the Bible. Pray. Add in a million spiritual things to do. This week, let’s focus on a simple one. Time. 

Psalm 46:10 says,

“ Be still and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”

In context, this verse is about acknowledging who God is in a time of desolation, and it specifically highlights that God will be lifted up in all the earth. If we can acknowledge his character and his glory in the midst of chaos, we can acknowledge it in the midst of anything. How do we do this?

“Be still and know that I am God.”

If you break down this beautiful command to it’s most simple form, this is what you get:

Be still and know that I am God.

Be still and know.

Be still.

Be.

We don’t have to be partaking in a worship service to know that he is God. We simply need to cultivate an awareness of who he is in the midst of being. Playing soccer can be considered being. Reading a book can be considered being. Taking a walk can be considered being. Listening to music can be considered being. Laying still on the carpet or grass can be considered being. In whatever we are doing, we can practice being aware of God’s presence, cultivating an inner stillness that abides with Jesus. This takes practice: to be still and to glorify him in the midst of the chaos of our daily lives. But it is worth it; in John 15:4, Jesus says:

“Abide in me, as I also abide in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must abide in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you abide in me.”

One of the most powerful elements of church on any Sunday is that, for approximately 90 minutes, we are intentional to be. For 90 minutes, we put aside our phones, our chores, our meals, our work, and we sit. Or we stand. We kneel. We listen to a sermon, we sing, we pray, we reflect, we fellowship with the Body of Christ. We are present.

At a store this week, I came across this add on a vending machine:

This can be applied to our quiet times! It might not always be about what we learn or how we confess. Sometimes it’s just the fact that we spend time being with Him. Consider the "snack" as awareness of his presence. It can take time to sink into the moment and encounter God, and it takes time and repetition to learn to do this. "It's worth the wait!" This is why we must be intentional:

Open up your calendar and, in the next day or two, find a time where you can fully be, a time where you can cultivate an awareness of God. Folding laundry. Going for a run. Waking up early. Receive it as being from the Lord. For when we are still in our spirits, then we are opened to know God.

“For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving.”

1 Timothy 4:4

As we sometimes sing - “Holy Spirit you are welcomed here, come flood this place and fill the atmosphere.Your glory God is what our hearts long for, to be overcome by Your Presence, Lord.”

About the Author: Allison is a massage therapy student at Schoolcraft College and waitress at Zola Bistro. When she isn't doing these two things, she's probably doing something around Antioch. She loves prayer, worship, and spending time with her connect group!