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Email from Yolande in S. Africa 7/09: "...I have been reading some deep and exciting books by people having heavenly encounters and was crying out in my heart for foundational teaching, for I wanted this so much and wanted it practical. During a long fast, I came across your website. I have purchased your books (can recommend to every hungry soul) and have shared with others who are purely delighted at the light you bring. You are a exceptional good teacher, a pure gift from heaven, practical, grounded in the Word, spiritual and sincere, and you lay a foundation so we as the church can get more out of the literature of pioneers and ground breakers...who wets our appetites for the deepest places in God."
Abiding in the Presence of God!
Another way of saying it...
Teach your heart to trust you can and have drawn near to God by trusting His grace to draw near to you here. By this, you
Receive the Kingdom of God
Abide in Christ HERE!
(This web site explains how to experience God's presence 24 hours-a-day, through a practical and joyous kind of repentance. Note: it works best to be developing a stronger scriptural basis for faith about drawing near and experiencing God, even while you are in the beginning stages of learning about these things.)
Abiding in the Presence of God, a Command with a Promise!
Note that it was on the greatest day of a feast that Jesus promised,
"Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, "If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, 'From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.'" But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive..." (John 7:37-39).
This promise is for you! It is totally realistic for you to "come and drink." You can experience God as intensely as Jesus promised! You can learn to draw near to God and enjoy His drawing near to you! By this you can practice the presence of God and you can experience the Holy Spirit flowing through you, continually.
God will do His part. Yes, some things will need to change with you, but you can do it.
You need to learn why you can "come to Him." You need to learn why you can "drink." You will also have to come to the place where you believe His glory "as the scriptures said." This site is for showing you how. Repentance will help you, but you also need an understanding that is practical and biblically solid, something you can be confident about.
A Theology that Makes Faith Strong
Practicing the presence of God by quenching our thirst with Him, requires faith in God's grace that He will come to us without His holding back. If you don't believe you won't be free to receive (Gal. 3:14; Rom. 4:16). This principle of our needing to believe is true of us individually. It is also true of us as the body of Christ.
Many Christians believe that God wants to give us a great outpouring of His presence. Yet, the way I see it, we will not receive the out-pouring for which we long until we as the body of Christ have the faith to receive it. Likewise, we will not have faith to receive His presence, until we believe it is right.
One of the greatest tragedies in the church today is that many Christians actually think their disbelief is "right." If our theology prevents us from believing we can receive the presence of the Holy Spirit intensely, then we will prevent God from pouring His Spirit upon us.
On one hand, some emphasize doctrine almost to the exclusion of being open to the Spirit of God. On the other hand, Christians who welcome the Spirit during their meetings often do not continue receiving the Holy Spirit after their gathering is over. Neither is right. The way I see it, the need to better understand and apply Godís word is just as great no matter where one goes to church.
The problem is our disbelief. Our theology, and our application of scripture, must align with receiving a flow of the Holy Spirit through us continually. God is waiting for us.
Whether God comes to us as a sprinkling, rain, or something as intense as a downpour we have to believe He will come "in full assurance of faith," without hesitation (Heb. 10:19,22). If we don't believe what the scriptures say, He won't be able to come to us as He desires.
Many Christians know that without faith it is impossible to please God. Have you missed what the second part of the verse says?
"And without faith it is impossible to please Him for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him" (Heb. 11:6).
We "must believe" that God will reward us with His presence when we seek Him. It is that way with wisdom from God (James 1:5-7). It is that way with His presence. It is also that way with experiencing relationship with Him.
But simply knowing these things isn't enough. None of us can receive Godís presence intensely until faith comes to us by "hearing" the word. The need is for a better understanding of the scriptures.
We need a theology that includes an understanding of the scriptures that make it possible for each one of us to continually receive God's presence. We need a strong biblical foundation upon which to base our faith in the grace of God.
This web site is for giving you a foundation for faith that is based on much scripture and is practical enough that it helps you find freedom to act out of faith toward God. Repentance together with this understanding is what will allow you to do what Jesus said, "come to me and drink." It is learning to live with a joyous kind of repentance that will make it practical for you to practice the presence of God.
Repentance should come before drawing near to God. But repentance will never be fully complete for any of us! Repentance is for drawing near to God and drinking, as soon as you are able! Repentance is for staying near to God in all His glory and drinking all the time. Even though that may sound impossible for you right now, you can do it. God is shepherding you toward this end!
A Practical Approach to Abiding in the Presence of God!
You know what it feels like inside when you pat yourself on the back for how kind you were to someone? Or, what about those times when you feel a sense of confidence because of how strong you are? Think about when you enjoy how much you made someone laugh? The surge of confidence, reassurance, and security you feel is because you are "drinking" from that situation or thought.
So, you want to practice the presence of God? The task before you is to repent of "drinking" by earthly means so that you can be free to turn to God, draw near, and "drink." Drinking from God is far better than drinking from even the good things in this life! You can do it. This site is for showing you how.
In that moment when you are drinking from earthly sources, you are applying a principle that King David applied toward God. He wrote, "I have set the Lord continually before me; because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. Therefore my heart is glad and my glory rejoices; My flesh also will dwell securely" (Psa. 16:8,9).
We drink on a human level by "setting" the circumstance or ability we have right before us. Then by contemplation about the earthly glory of it, we feed ourselves through subtle forms of praise toward our own human attributes. You don't have to "drink" that way because you can apply those same principles toward God! Receiving from God is simple because you already know how to "drink" from earthly sources. Observe yourself and learn from the scriptures.
Jesus told us to "come to Him and drink" (John 7:37-39). To do that you will need to use thanks and praise to get your heart to believe that you have access to enter the throne room. Then you enter by confidently trusting you are entering before the Lord, in all His glory. Trust God to make it actually happen. You can trust Him because He wants you there.
Then you do what David did; by faith, you "set the Lord before you." Do that by thinking often all through the day about the reality of your before the Lord and of His being here before you--in all His glory. You don't have to stop what you are doing. Don't isolate your experience of God's presence to your quiet time with God. Get your heart to trust you are staying there and receive from the Lord continually.
The things you are doing inside when you "receive" from earthly sources can be reapplied to receiving the presence of God. You already know how to "drink" His presence because you are drinking and receiving from earthly sources all the time. You just have to turn the loves and affections of your heart toward God and then reapply what you already know! The need to "turn" from setting earthly sources before you is why you have to repent.
Practical understanding is important. But by itself, knowing that you can "drink" isn't enough. In order to "drink" from God you need a stronger foundation for faith to believe your access to draw near to the Lord in all His glory. You also need to understand why you can trust that as you draw near to God, He washes you, dissolving all your reason to feel shame.
Repentance paves the way so that you can find greater freedom to believe God and also to trust that you are drawing near to Him. But being able to "drink" from God also requires a practical understanding and a solid biblical foundation. You can learn to practice the presence of God by learning to keep on "drinking" and receiving the Holy Spirit 24 hours-a-day. But without a solid understanding of the scriptures you won't have anything on which to base your faith.
About Feeling the Presence of God
Feeling the presence of God isn't the goal, but it does help. If you have been at this for a while and are frustrated about not being able to feel God I believe I have the answer. (12/22/03 - I don't feel like I have proven it yet but I am confident about it.)
I believe people who feel God have a natural understanding of what I call, "Activities of the Soul." These "activities" are a necessary part of actually entering and drinking from God. I am convinced that people who feel the presence of God understand these "Activities" and do them without thinking. Others need to be taught. I give exercises that explain "Activities of the Soul" in Appendix A of the Heart-training ebook. They are not complicated. But often people need apply the heart-training for at least a couple of weeks before they have the sensitivity to be able to do the exercises easily.
Would you like me to teach at your church or gathering? Contact me by email. I would like to speak to your group about "How to Love God More." email@example.com
Email me if you want the ebooks and can't pay for them, or especially if you are outside the USA - I would be happy to give them to you.
4 / 2011, a new version of the Heart-training ebook is now available!
Email from Tienie in S. Africa 10/08: "I have read most of the info on your website. It is very practical and easy to understand. In the past few years I have read a few books on the subject ''Living in the presence of God". Those books all date back to the 1600 and 1700.Molinos (The Spiritual Guide) ,Guyon (Experiencing the depths of Jesus Christ), Brother Lawrence (Practicing His Presence). Your material is much more understandable and usable..."
I am praying for the Lord's abundant blessing on your efforts to direct your heart toward Him.
Come and Drink ó Home
(C) Barry Hall 1999
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