Context: Yesterday, after the briefest of waking-up prayers, I wrote solidly from 6-8.30am. By then I had more or less completed “Golden light”, which later became the day’s blog. It was time to get up, but I decided to take a moment to pray before going downstairs. However, I had barely begun to collect my thoughts when I was hit by a series of revelations.
By the time they came to an end, I was shaken, tearful, joyful, reeling and awed, because I had just been given a glimpse of God’s infinite love and omnipresence. I had made some notes, but have no idea whether I wrote them during, or just after, what happened.
The experience was like watching slow-motion ripples spreading out wider and wider after a single drop of water had fallen into a vast, motionless sea. What I saw is very difficult to express in words, but I will do my best to describe each ripple in turn.
1. All love comes from God
I perceived that whenever I receive love, whether from a person or an animal, that love always comes from God, who lives within the one who is loving me.
2. God is in everything
Next, I grasped that God’s loving presence is in all that exists on earth, including everything made by people, as well as by God.
3. God is in good and bad
Then, I understood that God’s loving presence is not restricted to good people, creatures and things. Rather, divine love is equally present in difficult people, creatures, circumstances and events, including accidents, sickness, suffering, fear, grief and disaster – that is: all life and death.
4. God is in the cosmos
After this, I realised that everything in the cosmos also contains God’s loving presence, including the planets, suns, stars, comets, galaxies and even the dust of space.
Thus, I learned that divine love is present in everything, here and now, without exception. It has always been so, and always will be so, yet, like Jacob on his journey to Harran, I had not recognised this (see Genesis 28:16-17; NIV). As I write, I’m still shaking my head in wonderment at what I saw, yet there was more to come.
5. God is in all
Following this, I glimpsed that God’s loving presence can also be found in ugliness, destruction, abuse, violence and sin, though this is very hard to put into words. However much human beings damage and despoil the divine image in people, creatures, objects and creation, God’s love is still present in all things. Seeing this helped me to understand a little more about how God is able to bring good out of bad (see Romans 8:28; NLT).
Furthermore, I saw that there are no exceptions to God’s loving omnipresence. This means that there is nothing I can…
See, hear, smell, taste, or touch;
Use, waste, neglect, ignore, break, or discard;
Feel, think, say, or do;
Judge, hate, or destroy,
…that isn’t filled to overflowing with God’s loving presence.
6. Living in heaven
Lastly, I saw that when I consciously and fully recognise God’s constant, loving presence everywhere, and in all things, I live in God, which means living in heaven on earth. Similarly, after death, I will live in God, in heaven. Thus, I perceived that whether I live or die, oneness with God is the same.
God is present in all people, creatures, things, experiences and events, everywhere and forever, and God is love (1 John 4:16; NIV).
Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me all the days of my life, and I will live in the house of the LORD forever (Psalm 23:6; NLT).
There is one Lord …who is over all and in all and living through all (Ephesians 4:5-6; NLT).
Whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord (Romans 14:8; NLT).