When I was in my early twenties, I was fortunate to learn through a sermon at our church that we as humans connect differently with God. Some of us connect through art, some through music or singing, some through nature and so on. Since I believe we are all created uniquely, this makes sense to me. Each of us respond in our own way to experiences and activities in which we sense a piece of God residing there. Upon learning this concept, I did a little self exploring and found a few ways I deeply experience God.
One way is through being next to the ocean. I love the sound of the crashing waves. The fresh smell of salt water, sand and sea life. I love the various colors it takes on according to weather. I feel deeply grateful when I look at the ocean’s vastness and I am reminded how BIG our God is. I love walking or running along the sand and the inescapable feeling of “getting away” that comes with it, even if I only live a mile away. I can hear my thoughts and, even better, my own breath. With each rolling wave, perspective and gratitude come to me. I can not help but see God in and through that beautiful body of water.
Running is another way I experience God. Not only do I love the physical challenge – sweating, feeling my heart beat faster and sensing my body getting stronger one step at a time. But I love that the Holy Spirit meets me there. It is during those long miles – sometimes in silence, sometimes with music – that I have my most focused prayer and meditation time. When I’m running and praying, the Spirit encourages and convicts me, reveals thing to me, helps me to breathe and let certain things go, lays people or ideas on my heart. With each pounding foot in front of the other, strength and encouragement come to me. My running time creates space for Him to move and work in my life in a very real way.
The third way I experience God is through writing. I’ve always found writing to be easier than speaking and a freeing space for me to express what’s on my heart. When my pen hits the paper or when my fingers touch the keyboard, I am liberated, refreshed and inspired. But another beautiful thing happens: when I open my heart up to what the Holy Spirit is trying to pour into me, truth spills out. And not just the kind of truth I WANT to believe, but HIS truth. When I write, He reminds me that He sees me for who I am becoming. Not for who I was in the past, or even who I was yesterday. With each letter inked onto the page, my authentic self and truth come to me.
Now that I know these three life-giving ways I experience God, I prioritize making room for them in my life. I know that when I allow for time to be by the ocean, to run and to write, life naturally possesses more beauty, breath and life. And I speak from my own history, there is something magical in the showing up: He’s always prepared to meet with me. So I’m wondering today…
In what ways do you experience God?
If you don’t know, will you be brave and begin exploring what they are?
And if you already know what they are, will you show up and make room for Him to meet with you this week?