(Just to warn you, this first part is going to let you know how utterly ridiculous I am!)
This morning, I was talking to Jesus. I was telling Him how I love it when He gives me dreams and speaks to me in that way- but I was asking if maybe He could show up in my dreams and say things a little more clearly than the riddles and puzzles that He gives me most of the time. 🙂
I reminded Him of a tricky little calculation I made one day- where I had figured out that He must spend the equivalent of 5.24 seconds with each person each night- that is, if there are 6 billion people in the world and if truly one night watch to Him is like 1,000 years (Psalm 90:4). My point in reminding Him of this calculation was to say, “Hey, Man, can you show up for those 5.4 seconds in a dream?” (Dreams usually cram a lot into a little time anyway, right?)
“So you have me all figured out, do you?” He asked me. Um. How does one respond to that?
He then let me in on something pretty sweet, which in all honesty blew my mind about Who He is all over again!
Of course we know that God is omnipresent – everywhere at the same time, but, usually we think of God’s omnipresence the same way the pantheists do (you know, those ideologues that made Star Wars and Avatar). We generally believe that God is everywhere and in all. We think, you can’t escape the great presence of God no matter where you go, but when we imagine the concept of omnipresence, we usually just think of His presence as a passive existence in all places at all time.
So, on some occasions, maybe this everywhere-at-once God stirs and comes close- you know- in those really special moments during worship or those crazy mountaintop experiences like Moses had. Maybe He’s like the great eye of Sauron in the Lord of the Rings (but good and holy and all that, y’know?). Maybe, in certain moments, His gaze falls on us. Generally, we believe that on certain occasions – and always more often with those “special people” – He sees fit to give us more than our 5.24 seconds of undivided attention.
Well, that bunch of malarky above is how we often view Him, isn’t it? We cry out at the beginning of church services and prayer meetings, “God, won’t You show up tonight? Won’t You please send Your presence, Lord?” We stand there like idiots, crying out for Him to “cumbayah” again, much like those prophets of Baal back on Mount Carmel so many years ago (1 Kings 18:20-40). I guess it’s also why many of us try so sincerely to perform the perfect Christian life, thinking we might earn more of Him. What a finite view we have of our infinite Father!
This is what He whispered to me this morning, “Not only am I omnipresent, but I am fully present.”
Something that has always made me angry was when people say they love you, but can’t bother to pay attention in conversation. (Now, lest I point out the speck in other’s eyes without dealing with my own optical 2×4, let me confess that I sometimes catch myself doing this as well… which I recognize is a lack of love in me.)
Have you ever known someone who models this “full presence” to you? Someone who, when with you, is really there. You can tell that their thoughts are tracking with yours. You know that they are keenly interested in what you’re saying or doing at that moment. You occupy their attention. They are there with you. It’s usually a really good feeling.
God is not only “everywhere at once.” He is also fully present in those places.
No, I have absolutely NO IDEA how He does it. It’s just who He is. He’s soooooo gooooood!
Check out Psalm 139. Let that sink into your spirit. Whew.
Have you ever tried to be fully present for someone, and they just won’t let you in? I have. Not the most fun experience, is it? It can be straight up miserable. But, if you love someone, you keep trying, don’t you?
God’s love amazes me. He spends so much time just being there for us when we don’t give Him the least recognition. He is always fully present. Fully available. Ready to listen. Ready to provide whatever it is we’re needing in that moment. Oh, and He’s so fully present that He already knows what that is. He’s just waiting for us to let Him in (Revelation 3:20).
He’s fully present- HERE- right now. Waiting, with His eyes and heart fixed on us. Each of us.
His eyes and His heart are fixed on You. Do You recognize Him with you, right now?