Encounters with God

February 1, 2013

Today’s Reflection

RARELY DOES GOD show up in a burning bush or strike persons blind to get their attention, although it has been known to happen. More often, an encounter with God will occur in an ordinary way, but the moment will feel exceptionally real. The Divine Lover comes to us as God came to Jesus at his baptism—gently, like a dove; and in God’s coming we encounter the real and everlasting.

Most of these encounters endow us with an opportunity to enjoy the gift of the moment. For some the encounter might be in the beauty of naked trees against a winter sunset, in sunlight shining through a glass bottle of cobalt blue, or in conversations with trusted friends. For others the encounter may come through the embrace of a loved one, the smell of freshly cut roses, or a felt knowledge that God loves us. Our life is a gift. With each breath we breathe we are encountered by love.

- Karla M. Kincannon
Creativity and Divine Surprise

From page 33 of Creativity and Divine Surprise: Finding the Place of Your Resurrection by Karla M. Kincannon. Copyright © 2005 by Karla M. Kincannon. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. http://bookstore.upperroom.org/ Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

When have you last encountered God that has felt exceptionally real. Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

If I speak in the tongues of mortals and of angels, but do not have love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.
1 Corinthians 13:1, NRSV

This Week: pray for people seeking employment. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section below.

Did You Know?

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Saints, Inc.:

This week we remember Prudence Crandall (January 30).

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Sponsored by Upper Room Ministries ®. Copyright © 2012, a ministry of GBOD | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Jill February 1, 2013 at 3:33 am

I rescued a kitten about a month ago. He was very affectionate – greeted me at the door always, a nose nuzzler, very lovey. After a few weeks, he embraced his independence – and was not as affectionate. Still playful, great company, but not as near all the time. Well, just this morning, as I was reading this – he wanted to jump up in my lap and nose nuzzle. And I thought – as his motor was purring like crazy – doesn’t God just delight in me – when I crawl up into His lap – just for His presence. Just to sing a song of praise – just to be near Him. Father – thank You for what You are teaching me through my new little buddy.

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robert moeller February 1, 2013 at 4:50 am

Recently in church during a hymn I felt God. Its very difficult to describe, there were tears of joy, a special feeling that somehow there was a positive connection, it made me stop an acknowledge God.

Yes Lord, I pray for people looking for work, especially those who have been without a job for quite some time and are frustrated, disillusioned, and tired from their search. Comfort, console, encourage, strengthen, and grant them your wisdom, that they soon may be employed again. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.

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Jay February 1, 2013 at 7:56 am

Father, I felt your presence during the group prayer on the Puerto Rico mission trip. The story is too long to describe here but your clever sense of humor and powerful symbolism is something I’ll always treasure! Amen

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Joy February 1, 2013 at 8:15 am

My 13yo daughter, who suffers from mental illness, recently went to live with her dad and is not speaking to me. Within a few days, I opened the Scriptures twice to random places where the Bible just happened to open and started reading. Twice God sent me to verses that assured me that he brings the sons and daughters home (that specific wording). I trust Him.

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Larry Eugene Dyer February 1, 2013 at 8:36 am

A year ago a member of our extended family joined us after an extended period of immigration process. We had a special welcoming meal for her and lit a candle for the occassion. I placed the candle on a bookshelf with some small family picture albums standing in front of it. The other morning as I awoke it appeared as if the candle were lit. Upon investigation I discovered the light was the sunshine reflecting off the plastic cover of one of the albums. God has brought new light to our family over the last year through this new member. As I set typing this, the sun has just appeared over my shoulder. How many signs must we receive to believe ? God is our guiding light forever and ever. Praise God !!!

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Buzz February 1, 2013 at 3:57 pm

In prayer this morning I was struggling with how to address God. “Father” doesn’t compute for me as my father was less than loving. “God” seemed cold and distant. In the midst of this, I felt His presence assuring me that He is as near me as I want Him to be no matter what I call Him.

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Mary Ng Shwu Ling February 3, 2013 at 7:22 am

Thank you Father God for your providence and the gift of life. Thank you for good health and strength to serve my elderly parents and teach.

Father God, sometimes i feel very tired but thank you that you are always there inspiring me to cook something different for my parents, or to get what they need even when i am very tired.

Father God, at this moment, I want to lift those without jobs into your hands. Some may feel discouraged and depressed/ Others may have even given up hope. May you help them God. Have mercy on them and lead and guide them to the jobs they need. Thank you for hearing our prayers.

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April McBride February 4, 2013 at 10:48 pm

I had my 1st real experience, church was coming to an end and they did a call for the altar. The message was about God not giving us fear, the power of the Holy Spirit, and being of sound mind. Well I have suffered w/ depression and anxiety for decades. I was prayed for at the alter first by the Pastor then his wife during the experience I was shaking and crying like a baby and I couldn’t control myself and I had a vision (I guess) of Satan and God fighting over my mind and Satan finally letting go. And then I had a sense of peace. I can’t believe it. It was something that is hard to describe. It happened this past Sunday and i can’t stop thinking about it. Praise God

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