And then there are times when the presence of the lord is completely palpable. I heard a testimony last night that I really enjoyed. I'd like to share it, and I hope it is helpful.
I met this man yesterday and we had a really great conversation about God. He said that 20 years ago, he was living life like it was one big party until his long time girlfriend broke up with him. He felt shattered, and he ended up saying oh lord please help me. he fell onto the hardwood floor and cried a large puddle of tears for 3 hours. He had not been raised in a home where people talked about god or been to a church, and he had no idea of anything about God. When he quieted down he got up and immediately heard the lord say to him, I want you to go to the store you buy your magazines at and buy a bible. He immediately said yes lord and went outside. Everything outside seemed very bright and different than he had seen it before. He kept praying as he walked 10 miles and then he asked which bible and the Lord said this one. He took the bible home and was very eager and excited to open it. As he started to read the words of the fist chapter of Genesis leaped off the page like fire coming towards him.
He quit drinking, p 0 r n, and all fleshly things without effort instantly. The Lord told him to quit his job and he went in and did so saying to the boss, the lord doesn't want me to work here anymore. He spent all his time reading the word and telling people about Jesus everywhere he went. From that time he has been able to hear the Lord tell him about people and their needs and to use that information to witness to people and pray for them. He now works for himself but leaves plenty of time for witnessing and supports ministries. He can also see things we can't see in the natural like angels and demons and deliver people from them. He is a peaceful happy man who boldly proclaims the good news, fasts and prays for hours. His story is much like the one of the apostle Paul on the road to damascus.
There are many people like him. Some of us don't have so dramatic a transformation. I believe two main things influence our walk with God. Our willingness to trust him (surrender), and our ability to emotionally connect with him(love/intimacy). Sin is of course an issue but much less important than these two. The spirit helps you to overcome sin, for the greater degree we are able to host the presence of the lord the greater the degree we have no taste for sin. Only until we can host the lord do we have to fight sin. Of course persecution will always be with us, but the degree to which we allow it to affect us depends on our willingness to take dominion over our lives and recognize that we battle not with flesh and blood but with the powers of hell.
That felt really good to tell. YOU can walk in the gifts, train your mind to trust not worry, develop a loving feeling for God and allow the Holy Spirit to look however he is going to look-and I know I am pushing buttons now.