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-- © GodSpeak International 2002 --
-- Do not republish without written permission from <copyright@godspeak.org> --

Author: Elvi Glass <yael062005@yahoo.com>
Editors: Teresa Seputis & Bob Hawley

Prayer-School Course #33

Prophetic Intercession

Lesson 7

Living in the Presence of God

By Elvi Glass

There are times in our lives when we feel lonely and disconnected from God, especially when we are going through difficult times. During those times it can be difficult for us to realize that God is still close to us. It is important for us, as believers and prophetic intercessors, to realize the presence of God in our lives regardless of whether we feel it or not. When we are engaged in battle, the enemy will often try to have us doubt God's love for us. He knows that when we think God is distant, we will get discouraged and quit fighting.

In this lesson we will talk about God's presence and His Kingdom. We will also examine how God's Kingdom interacts with believers.

I didn't really understand what it meant to live in God's presence until I had a powerful encounter with God. One day as I was praying, I was suddenly caught up before God's throne. This caught me completely by surprise and it took me a few seconds to realize what happened. As I looked around trying to figure out where I was, I noticed a huge throne. On this throne sat an incredibly powerful presence. I had a sense that the presence was watching me. It is difficult to describe the sense of this experience. It was like the presence was eternity itself and the beginning and end of all existence. I was not allowed to see His face, but I knew it was God. His robe filled the place where I was standing. Each time God moved, flashes of lightning came from Him. I heard a sound like electricity because of the great power coming from Him. I felt like dust and I realized for the first time in my life how much I needed Him. I knew that He held the power of life and death in His hands and He could have wiped me out with a blink of an eye. He did not talk to me. I was just there, but even the silence contained everything that He wanted me to know. This experience lasted only a few seconds and I found myself once again in my living room. I was engaged in heavy warfare during that time and encountered much resistance. This experience taught me about God's presence and about His seriousness in wanting to be close to His children.

God's presence is always around us. God keeps His children like the apple of His eye. That is pretty close, isn't it? He makes us His business. When we yield to Him in everything, He will be sure to direct us in a way that allows Him to fulfill His calling on our lives. When we talk to Him, He listens and when we intercede for others He pays attention.

Psalm 41:12 states: "In my integrity You uphold me and set me in Your presence forever."

Forever is a long time. It means always until the end of time and beyond. When we feel removed from God, it is we who moved. God hasn't moved. We say, "God please come close to me," but God answers, "I am already here. You just need to move toward Me. I have never moved. I have been here waiting for you."

Psalm 31:20 states: "In the shelter of Your presence, You hide them from the intrigues of men. In Your dwelling, You keep them safe from accusing tongues." God hides us from our enemies. He wants to protect us and cover us with His wings. He makes us His business. Being in God's presence is a normal part of being saved.

Paul illustrated the bigger picture about our relationship to the Kingdom in Corinthians. In 1 Cor. 4:9, he painted a picture of us believers living our lives in an arena with heaven watching as spectators: "For it seems to me that God has put us apostles on display at the end of the procession, like men condemned to die in the arena. We have been made a spectacle to the whole universe, to angels as well as to men."

This scripture gives us a clear illustration of heaven watching as we conduct our lives. Heaven knows our names. They know everything about us. That is pretty personal. I believe that each day we decide either for or against the purposes of God. And when we chose right, heaven is cheering us on. Nobody ever promised us that it will be easy. There is a price to pay to choose for God's purposes. The enemy is going to try to make this as difficult as he can, but you see, he is limited. Mostly he is limited to what we allow. If he can convince us that we are alone and fending for ourselves, he already won. When we believe that, it will be easy for us to give up.

The truth is that God already prepared the works we are supposed to be doing. He already knows the outcome. He has every intention to help us bring those works to completion. He will not stop in the middle. He will bring us through. He wants us to win the prize. He knows that we need His help. It wouldn't make sense for Him to leave us to fend for ourselves.

Paul writes in Ephesians 2:10: "For we are God's workmanship created in Christ Jesus to do good works which God prepared in advance for us."

We don't have to worry about what the next job will be or how He will bring it about. If we yield to God in the things He has given us to do, He will be sure to bring the other things in His timing. However, there are times when we delay God's working in our lives. These are the times when we try to make it happen on our own or we may try to skip what He wants us to work on.

Just because we may not hear from God about a specific situation does not mean that He is not aware of it. At times God will intentionally not give us all the specifics because He wants to avoid us wanting to run ahead of His schedule.

God even listens in on our conversations. An example of this is listed in Malachi 3:16. "Then those who feared the Lord talked with each other, and the Lord listened and heard. A scroll of remembrance was written in His presence concerning those who feared the Lord and honored His name." Therefore, what we say and don't say is important. Let's have our words seasoned with things God would approve of. Remember, the tongue speaks either life or death. That includes God's promises. We can say: "God never will do this for me." That is unbelief and God will not work through unbelief.

Samuel the prophet knew that he lived his life in God's presence as well. When Samuel addressed the Israelites in 1 Samuel 12:3, he said, "Here I stand. Testify against me in the presence of the Lord and His anointed." Samuel addressed the Israelites, but he knew that the Israelites were not the only ones listening. He knew that ultimately he was accountable to God. He knew that God and His Kingdom were equally present that day.

So what about warfare? Can we count on God's presence to be there when we conduct warfare? Yes we can. In fact, we would not get anywhere without God's presence. God's presence brings His Kingdom. Often intercessors focus too much on the presence of the enemy. This is what happened to Elish'a servant. King Aram was at war with Israel, but every time he tried to set a trap for Israel, Israel was able to avoid it because Elisha told them of Aram's plans. Aram was very upset and demanded that Elisha be captured. He ordered a strong force and chariots to surround the city where Elisha lived. Elisha's servant got scared when he saw the great force that was set against them. He looked at the situation with his physical eyes, but Elisha looked at it with spiritual eyes. He wasn't scared at all. Elisha knew the truth. He knew that God was on his side and where God is there is also His Kingdom.

Let's pick up the story from 2 Kings 6:16-17: "'Don't be afraid,' the prophet answered. 'Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.' And Elisha prayed, 'O Lord, open his eyes so he may see.' Then the Lord opened the servant's eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha."

This scripture gives us a perfect example of what is going on when we conduct warfare. Let's look at things with spiritual eyes. Our spiritual eyes are able to look beyond this life into eternity. With their help we will have an eternal perspective. God gives us this eternal perspective through the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit helps us understand the bigger picture. Ephesians 1:18 puts it this way, "I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened so you may know the hope to which He has called you."

We sometimes think God withdraws His presence because we messed up. But God is not like that. People may walk away from us because we mess up, but God is faithful even when we are not. He doesn't withdraw because we make mistakes. He knows we will make mistakes. God is committed to us.

In light of all of this, my prayer for you is the prayer Paul prayed in Ephesians 1:17-23:

"I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know Him better. I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened so that you may know the hope to which He has called you, the riches of His glorious inheritance in the saints, and His incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is like the working of His mighty strength, which He exerted in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be given, not only in the present age, but also in the one to come."

-- © GodSpeak International 2002 --
-- Do not republish without written permission from copyright@godspeak.org --

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