Monday, April 23, 2012

Utterly Encompassed

You are utterly encompassed by God. He is in you, around you, beside you, above you, below you. This is the total truth. We have become blinded to such a degree that most of us have lost this sense of His Presence. The eyes of our souls have dimmed to an alarming degree and there are those who have absolutely no sense of God's presence whatsoever.

And yet He is ever there. Always. You could not even take a breath without Him.

Imagine this:

A human person is totally surrounded by and caught up in the love of God and yet completely unaware of this Divine Presence. Why? We are taught as children that God is love and He is everywhere. We are taught about the indwelling of the Trinity. So, why?

What happens to a person that causes them to lose this sense of God's love?

Sin happens. The eyes of the soul darken and grow dim from lack of light. Our spirit dulls. The duller our spirit grows the less aware we become of God and the more aware we become of ourselves. Not a healthy awareness of ourselves as existing in God, for God, and with God, but an unhealthy awareness that has negative effects on both ourselves and others.

Enter the kingdom of "me, myself, and I". This is the name of the kingdom where most of us exist (to lesser or greater degree) these days. Maybe not everyone, but certainly the majority. You can ask how someone can be so certain that this is the truth and my answer will be very simple:

"By their fruits you will know them." (Mt 7:16) I am not being pessimistic. I know God has things well in hand. But the simple truth is that if we look around us we can see that humanity, on the whole, is producing some very bitter fruit indeed. Yes, there are those who are producing good fruit but the majority of us are off kilter in some way that's hard to pinpoint completely. In some aspects, I think part of the problem is that we don't put God first in our lives. We think we do, but we don't really. We think of things from the perspective, "How will this affect me, personally?" We become the center of our own universe and  whenever this happens, the result is suffering. Whether upon ourselves or others, if we don't acknowledge the fact that God is the source of all good and the center of existence, well...we bring suffering upon each other. This is part and parcel of living in the kingdom of "me, myself, and I".

In reality, there is only one kingdom. And that is God's. Because we have free will God allows us to live in our pretend kingdoms if we choose to but these kingdoms have no basis in reality. Eventually these kingdoms fall because they have to. In the sentences below I am speaking about a state of being and not necessarily a final destination. I am simply saying that God certainly gives us plenty of hints as to how we are doing. For instance, I know I am in a state of purgation right now and have been for years.  Yet, in this state I get tastes of Heaven too. God is good.

If these false worlds we create don't fall?  Hell happens. Why? Because it is a refusal of God's Kingdom over our own.


If they partially fall?  Purgatory

If they do fall completely?

Heaven reigns in our hearts.


In Him we live and move and have our being. (See Acts17:22-31)







7 comments:

  1. I was reading an article today which said in the UK 80% of people said they believed in God. Yet, only 10% attended any place of worship (all religions). If you counted just Christians only the figure would be even lower.

    Why?

    Because, as you say Mary, people have excluded God from their lives.

    Why?

    Many reasons. Complacence, affluence, not caring or believing enough, it's fashionable not to believe, sin ... and so on.

    In reality, even many Christians who actually do go to church seem not to have God in their lives.

    We can blame sin. We can blame the church for its lack of guidance and teaching. We can blame the priests. We can blame anything else we like.

    Personally, I blame the devil for the fact that many, some Christians included, are sleep-walking their way into hell.

    Thanx for this great article.

    God bless.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Beautiful reflection, Mary. I love remembering that God totally surrounds and fills me! But, I need to be reminded sometimes..so thank you!

    I find that when I neglect prayer, I lose awareness of that Presence.

    May we all make it to that last and most wonderful place..Heaven.

    Love,
    Patricia

    ReplyDelete
  3. I love the idea of being encompassed in God. No escaping Him.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Mary,

    Your opening words bring to mind such a thrilling vision. My heart just leapt with love for God. If only I could be aware of His presence like that all the time!

    Yes, sin... such a big obstacle between me and God.

    You said, "we don't put God first in our lives. We think we do, but we don't really." I have been pondering this in my own life. I think I spend so much time doing God's work but I wonder how much self-interest creeps into all my good works spoiling them. I am going to think more about this!

    Thank you for such a thought provoking post, Mary. If I keep reading your posts, surely I will stop being so spiritually lazy and actually start moving forward? I hope so!

    God bless you!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Very good post, Mary. So much truth and sound theology in here.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Mary, I could have stopped after your first sentence and found much there for meditation. I am glad I kept reading though. I think that these worlds that we create for ourselves happen very gradually for most of us so that we become desensitized in a way. If we allow God's grace in, then hopefully we can allow Him to tear down these walls and worlds. The pruning is always a bit painful but so necessary.
    I agree that it begins with putting God above everything. Seek first the Kingdom of God...
    Thanks for writing this; even those of us who try to put God first and do His will need to be reminded to go a little deeper and let God clean house.
    God bless.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Beautiful reflection. Thank you!

    ReplyDelete