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Pathways to God's presence | Bible Series

Embrace deeper, more satisfying intimacy with God through the spiritual disciplines

How do we keep our relationship with God fresh and not stale? How do we avoid being disappointed or dissatisfied with our spirituality? How do we explore fresh avenues to meet with God especially when it’s dry or painful? How do we keep vibrant faith in the valley, in the pit, in the darkness, and also in the high places – how do we make God the center of our lives? If these questions resonate with you, then we welcome you to our winter 2023 series, "Pathways to God's presence."

The secret to the high Christian life, a life of satisfaction in God regardless of circumstances – good or bad, internal or external – the secret to the high Christian life is to practice the presence of God. What does it look like? Why is it even the key to our problem of stale, boring faith? We will explore this together over the course of this series. We will look at the theology and the practical answers provided by the spiritual disciplines.

What are the spiritual disciplines and what do they have to do with pathways to God’s presence? Prayer, Bible study and worship are the major thoroughfares to experience the presence of God. While they are the main three pathways to the presence of God, there are countless ways to define them. Prayer has many elements to it, as does worship and the intake of Scripture. We will ponder one element of each one of these, each week, together. 

There are many more spiritual disciplines; we will mention them, practice them, and hopefully they will come together like so many ingredients of a recipe, so that you will indeed taste and see that the Lord is good. Through the prism of worship, Bible intake and prayer we will look at sabbath, service, stewardship of talent, resources and time, as well as fasting, evangelism and discipleship, fellowship and community, even silence and solitude as essential pathways to God’s presence. Each discipline has a personal component and a public component – there are different ways to practice them. For example there is private and public prayer; there is personal worship, and then there is worship on Sundays at church. There is private Bible study, reading and memorizing, and there is the public teaching of the Word at church or in small groups or through one-on-one discipleship, and then there is the public sharing of the Word through evangelism.

Our series is called, “Pathways to God’s presence.” Let's be clear: Jesus is the way to the Father. The only way to the Father. Apart from Him we have no access. He is also our Advocate, interceding for us even now, and we know that His prayers are always welcomed and answered from the fullness of the Father’s abundance. So, when we ponder pathways to God’s presence, we must always remember – Jesus is the One who makes these pathways possible. That is why He is our role model, our guide. He is the way. He is also the destination. We cultivate intimacy with God, ONLY From Christ and in Christ and for Christ and through Christ. 

Jesus, before time began and before the incarnation, was perfectly intimate and one and united with the Father. That is the Trinity. We cant understand it, but we can apprehend just enough of it to see its matchless harmony and radiance. Then at the incarnation, and for the thirty-some years that followed, Jesus who was God and had been with God since before time was (see John 1:1), this Jesus took on fullness of humanity. He walked among us, not lessening in any way the depth of intimacy He had always enjoyed with His Father. Only at the cross, and momentarily though thoroughly, was it severed—for our sake. So, yes, Jesus is indeed the only Pathway to God’s presence. But He also gave us means to grow in intimacy with God, just like He did as a human – He prayed and fasted and studied Scripture and had fellowship with others and served and loved and discipled and evangelized and role-modeled all the things He is inviting us to develop in our own lives as pathways to His presence. He is the way and He is the destination through the spiritual disciplines.

Join us this season on the pathways to God's presence!

If you practice particular disciplines for your benefit, we would love to hear from you. We need to learn from one another! Please comment on social media or send us an email. We want to hear how you walk the pathways to God’s presence!

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