Chill out with God!
Chill out with God? Really?
I can already see your reaction to the title of this post – what do you mean chill out with God? He is too powerful and too holy to hang out with me! Well recently, I was thinking about how it feels to have a close relationship with God, so close that one literally dwells in his presence most of the time. I also asked myself, are there any benefits to being in God’s presence? What will I experience if I chill out with God? Let’s have a look!
When I think of peace, I imagine a feeling of rest, where there are no worries because God has everything in control. There are times when we all run to God in great anguish, and after we have poured out our hearts to him, there is a sense of stillness – i.e., peace. Moses desperately needed this peace when he went before God in Exodus 33 asking how he would manage to lead the people of Israel on his own. Here is what God said in response:
Exodus 33:14 ‘The LORD replied,” My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.” (NIV)
I can only imagine how I would have felt if I heard those words – “I will give you rest.” Rest – a sense of peace knowing God has my problems in his hands, and will take care of them. Even more, a reason to chill out with him!
Psalm 16:11 “You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.” (NIV)
The Psalmist testified of the joy he experienced in God’s presence, a joy that replaced the sorrows that drove him there in the first place, a joy that came from spending time with someone close to him. How exciting it is to experience God’s presence as he lifts your burdens and sorrows and replaces them with his joy! Isn’t it even more exciting to hear him speak to you from his word as he teaches you his ways? The Lord longs to have fellowship with us, and as such, when we oblige, he is ready to fill us with his joy as we commune with him.
There are times when I just need a big hug from someone who understands what I am going through. Such moments are similar to what the Psalmist describes in Psalm 23 below:
Psalm 23:4 “Even though I walk through the darkest valley…”
Does the term ‘darkest valley’ sound familiar to you? Have you ever been, or are you currently in a dark valley? Let’s see what else the Psalmist had to say about this valley.
Psalm 23:4 “Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” (NIV)
The Psalmist is reminding us that God’s presence can be found in the dark periods. God longs to comfort us when we need it the most. In other words, don’t be afraid when you are going through a trial. Instead, ask God to walk through it with you, and offer his comfort until you finally climb out of the valley!
Genesis 28:15 “What’s more, I am with you, and I will protect you wherever you go. One day I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have finished giving you everything I have promised you.” (NLT)
When God’s presence is with you, you are protected. Think of it this way – as you walk around, you are not alone, as you are communing with God throughout. As such, his presence protects you from whatever may harm you out there. A while back, when I was having a challenging season, I would ask God to walk with me whenever I would walk out of the house, and the feeling of protection was awesome. This protection is available to anyone who asks for it – if you need his presence and protection today, ask for it, and prepare to chill out with God in the process!
Do you now believe it is possible to chill out with God? Great! Now grab your Bible and go hang out with him in a quiet place!
James 4:8a “Come close to God, and God will come close to you.” (NLT)