SOLITUDE WITH GOD

CHRIST THE ROCK CONGREGATION

SUNDAY DECEMBER 18TH 2022

Sermon By Pastor Marc E Simeon

SOLITUDE WITH GOD

Da 6:10 Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went home. And in his upper room, with his windows open toward Jerusalem, he knelt down on his knees three times that day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom since early days.

INTRODUCTION

  • There are many things we do to enhance our fellowship with God.
  • We come to church regularly.
  • We stay consistent in our Bible reading.
  • We join prayer groups.
  • We participate in Bible study.
  • We go to mission trips.
  • We volunteer in church activities.
  • We feed the hungry.
  • We visit the sick.
  • We do all those and many more in aim to boost our intimacy with God.
  • The sad thing is that in spite of all our business for God, sometimes we still can’t feel the presence of God
  • Some try to double their effort to lure the presence of God by putting more time and energy, all to no avail.
  • Sadly, instead of following the lead of the Holy Spirit on how to draw nearer to God, we agitate ourselves to exhaustion and despair.
  • Religious duties are not a sure way to access God’s presence.
  • The more we get to know God at a personal level, the more we discover how to find Him.
  • Since God is a personal God, there is no uniform way to find the presence of God.

THE ENCOUNTER OF PROPHET ELIJAH WITH GOD

  • The great prophet Elijah had an unusual encounter with at his lowest moment in life.
  • His hiding place became an altar unintentionally.

1Kings 19:11-13

  • 11 Then He said, “Go out, and stand on the mountain before the LORD.” And behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind tore into the mountains and broke the rocks in pieces before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake;
  •  12 and after the earthquake a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice.
  •  13 So it was, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle and went out and stood in the entrance of the cave. Suddenly a voice came to him, and said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”
  • Everyone needs to identify the presence of God in the happenings of his life.
  • Your preconceived ideas about God may prevent you from experiencing God.
  • God could have been in the midst of storm, or the earthquake, or the fire.
  • It takes spiritual discernments to locate God in the midst of the happenings in your life.

HOW TO CAPTURE THE VISITATION OF GOD

  • If you’ve been a Christian for a while, you will soon discover that some of the most meaningful encounters with God may not happen in church.
  • Sometimes God would show up in the most peculiar and unexpected places.
  • What would you do if each time you pass by a certain spot you feel a strong surge of the presence of God?
  • What do you do when you have a strong yearning to meet God at a certain place?
  • What do you do when you discover a certain thing you do brings you to a close proximity with God?
  • I believe that God is busy giving us hints on how to capture His presence, but we are so ignorant for the most part.
  • Jacob found a certain spot on his way to Paddan-Aram.
  • Jacob had a strong encounter with God and understood that the location was not ordinary and thus changed the name of the place.

Ge 28:10-16

10  ¶ Now Jacob went out from Beersheba and went toward Haran.

 11 So he came to a certain place and stayed there all night, because the sun had set. And he took one of the stones of that place and put it at his head, and he lay down in that place to sleep.

 12 Then he dreamed, and behold, a ladder was set up on the earth, and its top reached to heaven; and there the angels of God were ascending and descending on it.

 13 And behold, the LORD stood above it and said: “I am the LORD God of Abraham your father and the God of Isaac; the land on which you lie I will give to you and your descendants.

 14 “Also your descendants shall be as the dust of the earth; you shall spread abroad to the west and the east, to the north and the south; and in you and in your seed all the families of the earth shall be blessed.

 15 “Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land; for I will not leave you until I have done what I have spoken to you.”

 16 ¶ Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, “Surely the LORD is in this place, and I did not know it.”

  • The place of God’s visitation to you must be acknowledged.
  • The place of God’s revelation to you must be appreciated and revered.
  • The place of God’s disclosure to you must have a special meaning to you.
  • It is like the location of the first date, everyone needs to build their own memory with God.
  • Jacob acknowledged that the place was not ordinary.
  • Jacob made it a point to come back to that place to fulfill his promises to God.
  • Jacob made an altar in that place and offered praise to God.
  • Every Christian needs to develop spiritual sensitivity to recognize the revelations of God.
  • These discoveries of God’s presence are unique and personal.
  • Apart from following all the precepts of the Bible to live a holy life before God, serious Christians keep looking to experience God every chance they get.

MY PERSONAL ALTARS

  • Sometimes I feel drawn to go seat by the ocean or at a certain spot on a park.
  • Every time I feel lost in the mundane of life, I would often find those familiar places to be alone with God.
  • I used to have several of those spots when I was young.
  • In each State I moved to I always discover these spots of a great surge of the presence of God.
  • The funny thing is that these experiences are personal and tailor made just for you.
  • Another person may not experience the same as you.
  • I can just look at a tree and feel an excitement to worship God.
  • I can be eating a fruit and sense a great yearning to be in the presence of God.
  • I can just look at a beautiful flower and began to praise God for his creativity and his brilliance, and his generosity.

THE ALTARS OF ABRAHAM

  • Abraham is the prototype in making most of God’s visitation.
  • Although altars to God predated Abraham, but it was through him that we learned the importance of making altars to meet with God.
  • Each time Abraham has a strong visitation from God, he created a memorial of it by building an altar.
  • It’s as if planting an antenna at a strategic spot for maximum signal reception.
  • There is no verse for what I am telling you, this is something once discovers as he walks with God.
  • A little boy said “Enoch was a good friend with God, they always walk together and one day Enoch went too far and he could not find his way back, so he remained with God”
  • Abraham always made a big deal of each of his encounters with God.
  • Ge 12:7,8;
  • Ge 12:7 Then the LORD appeared to Abram and said, “To your descendants I will give this land.” And there he built an altar to the LORD, who had appeared to him.
  •  8 And he moved from there to the mountain east of Bethel, and he pitched his tent with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east; there he built an altar to the LORD and called on the name of the LORD.

Ge 13:18 Then Abram moved his tent, and went and dwelt by the terebinth trees of Mamre, which are in Hebron, and built an altar there to the LORD.

Ge 22:8-9 And Abraham said, “My son, God will provide for Himself the lamb for a burnt offering.” So the two of them went together.

9 Then they came to the place of which God had told him. And Abraham built an altar there and placed the wood in order; and he bound Isaac his son and laid him on the altar, upon the wood

  • Personal encounters with God are not encouraged enough in our days.
  • People would rather indoctrinate you to their religion than to encourage you to have a personal encounter with God.
  • They don’t trust that you would know what to do if God manifests Himself to you.
  • Jacob went on to build several altars throughout his lifetime.
  • Each of Jacob’s altars had a personal significance to him.
  • I remember where I made a number of my prayers when I was a young man at the major crossroads in my life. (Partner in life, career choice, where to live, etc)
  • I had a particular spot where I wrote several letters to God.
  • I spent ample time there in prayer and sometimes in praising, and again, sometimes in lamenting before God.
  • Your spiritual sensitivity will allow you to discover where God wants to meet with you.
  • A meeting with God may involve creating a conducive atmosphere to absorb the presence of God.
  • Solitude is really encouraged so that you can freely express yourself.
  • Prayer closet, Prayer Mountain, prayer room, the park, and the shores, under a certain tree, at a certain parking lot, all of the above can be favorite for your rendezvous with God.
  • You might feel the need to shout the loudest that you’ve ever done.
  • You might need to pour an ocean of tears before God.
  • God’s healing process may take any forms; great convulsions of emotions may be involved; you must be ready for it all, so privacy is paramount.
  • I like it when it happens out of the blue unexpectedly.
  • For some people the heavenly signals may seem higher at a certain time of the day. If so, create the regularity to be with God.
  • Remember that Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph and many other biblical characters had limited knowledge of God, yet, they’ve had the most profound encounters with God.
  • They did not have a bible, or Christian song books.
  • It was their spiritual sensitivity that girded their walks with God.
  • Now that we have the benefits of the written word of God and the availability of the Holy Spirit, that should in no way discourage us to have even more than what they had.
  • The law of God was written in their hearts and they knew what to do at each visitation of God.

CONCLUSION

WHERE IS YOUR ALTAR?

WHERE IS YOUR SECRET MEETING PLACE WITH GOD?

HAVE YOU ACKNOWLEDGED THE PLACES OF GOD’S VISITATIONS TO YOU?

WHEN WAS YOUR LAST DATE WITH GOD?

  • The devil is afraid of anointed Christians.
  • If you have a payer room and have spent ample time in deep and intense communication with God, Satan knows that you are a loaded weapon that can be unleashed in his face at any moment.
  • Daniel had a spot in his house near a window that overlooked Jerusalem where he felt the strongest signals with God.
  • The devil tried to prevent him from communicating with God.
  • Do not impose your personal altar rules and practices upon others; they may do all that you do and not sense the presence of God.
  • Encourage each person to develop his/her own habits with God.
  • The altar is the place you go to beg God to return to fellowship with you.
  • Begin to identify those altar posts around you.
  • Cherish your altars and keep it holy for utmost satisfying encounters with God.
  • Many of the altars of the Bible were documented.
  • Many of the altars were given specific names based of the nature of the manifestation of God.
  • Begin to document your walks with God and it will serve as guidelines for future generations in their quests for God.                 AMEN!

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