This is might be more of a confessional post than a informative one. In my small group, us guys are reading A.W. Tozer’s The Pursuit of God. Fantastic. In chapter 3-Removing the Veil, he talks about how the veil to the holy of holies was torn but that there is still a veil over our hearts even as regenerate Christians that we have left in place, and that is the veil of sinful self. It keeps us from entering the Presence.
I would say that currently the vast majority of my time as a Christian is standing outside the holy of holies and not entering into the presence of God in a meaningful way. I still am in the temple and have access, but have not fully entered in to commune. By that I mean, I love to read, I love to learn but to really desire God in such a way that he truly is my treasure, truly is my passion, and truly is my motivation is something I long to have as part of my normative Christian walk.
Yes, this is partially an emotional experience, but so much more. It is a conscious awareness of being in the Presence. It is excitement for the things of God; it is an excitement to learn of God, and an excitement to spend time with God. Many can probably relate to Christianity as a chore. Bible reading is hard, committed prayer is hard, and just keeping a good testimony is hard. This is because my treasure is misplaced, not necessarily sinful in things either, but just wrongly prioritized.
I love to learn, which has been God’s gracious way of motivating me to still learn about Him even without a consistent spiritual connection; but the main thing that drew me to John Piper’s ministry was that he seemed to have an essential part of Christianity that I lacked-sincere, consistent desire.
So, I desire to break through the veil of my selfishness and enter into the Presence; to truly commune with God; to be consciously aware of Him, and to be doing the things I do out of a heartfelt passion for God.
For example, when reading chapters 3 and 4 of Tozer’s book I literally was having a worship experience. I was so grateful to God for the truths that were being expounded upon, for the council being given, and the exhortation being infused into my person. I found myself internally saying “Yes, this is right! Thank you God!”.
I do have moments like these and I understand that since I am a sinful human that it will always be a life long pursuit of God, but I believe it is obtainable to have an awareness and communion with God in the every day and have that be the normative experience vs the exception.
Here are three books that have helped many, including myself, with this topic: