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Sermon Quotes

God’s Presence

Augustine of Hippo

Late have I loved you, Beauty so ancient and so new, late have I loved you! Lo, you were within, but I outside, seeking there for you, and upon the shapely things you have made I rushed headlong, I, misshapen. You were with me, but I was not with you. They held me back far from you, those things which would have no being were they not in you. You called, shouted, broke through my deafness; you flared, blazed, banished my blindness; you lavished your fragrance, I gasped, and now I pant for you; I tasted you, and I hunger and thirst; you touched me, and I burned for your peace.

The Confessions

 

William Barclay

Here is an eternal truth. Life cannot be divided into compartments in some which God is involved and in others of which he is not involved… The fact is that God does not need to be invited into certain departments of life, and kept out of others. He is everywhere, all through life and in every activity of life. He hears not only the words that are spoken in his name; he hears all words; and there cannot be any such thing as a form of words which evades bringing God into any transaction. We will regard all promises as sacred if we remember that all promises are made in the presence of God.

 

Mark Batterson

You cannot be in the presence of God and be bored at the same time. For that matter, you cannot be in the will of God and be bored at the same time.

 Going All In: One Decision Can Change Everything, Zondervan 

Bernard of Clairvaux

Jesus the very thought of Thee

With sweetness fills my breast;

But sweeter far Thy face to see,

And in Thy presence rest.

Brother Lawrence

The most holy and important practice in the spiritual life is the presence of God – that is, every moment to take great pleasure that God is with you.

Frederick Buechner

There is no event so commonplace but that God is present within it, always hiddenly, always leaving you room to recognize him or not . . . because in the last analysis all moments are key moments, and life itself is grace.

Listening to Your Life, HarperOne

 

Francis De Sales

Several times during the day, but especially in the morning and evening, ask yourself for a moment if you have your soul in your hands or if some passion or fit of anxiety has robbed you of it…. If you have gone astray, quietly bring your soul back to the presence of God, subjecting all your affections and desires to the obedience and direction of His Divine Will.

Introduction to a Devout Life

Francois Fenelon

The Presence of God calms the soul, and gives it quiet and repose.

Spiritual Progress, Or, Instructions in the Divine Life of the Soul.

 

Craig Groeschel

What if drawing closer to God, developing genuine intimacy with him, requires you to bear something that feels unbearable? To hear him through an ominous utterance, to trust him in the moment of doom, to embrace his strength when you’re weak with a burden? What if it takes real pain to experience deep and abiding hope?

Hope in the Dark, Zondervan.

Thomas Keating

We rarely think of the air we breathe, yet it is in us and around us all the time. In similar fashion, the presence of God penetrates us, is all around us, is always embracing us.

Open Mind, Open Heart: The Contemplative Dimension of the Gospel, A&C Black.

Helen Keller

Deep, solemn optimism, it seems to me, should spring from this firm belief in the presence of God in the individual; not a remote, unapproachable governor of the universe, but a God who is very near every one of us, who is present not only in earth, sea and sky, but also in every pure and noble impulse of our hearts.

The World I Live In and Optimism: A Collection of Essays, Courier Corporation.

Craig Keener

If we must “feel” God’s presence before we believe he is with us, we again reduce God to our ability to grasp him, making him an idol instead of acknowledging him as God.”

Gift & Giver: The Holy Spirit for Today.

 

Peter Kreeft

Prayer is essentially the practice of the presence of God, and that is the road to Heaven. There is no alternative. God is the only game in town. All other roads are dead ends. Since we must give our all to the one true God, we must not give any part to idols, to the many false gods that now bite away at our lives.

Prayer for Beginners, Ignatius Press.

Anne Lamott

If I were going to begin practicing the presence of God for the first time today, it would help to begin by admitting the three most terrible truths of our existence: that we are so ruined, and so loved, and in charge of so little.

Help, Thanks, Wow: The First Essential Prayer,  Hachette UK.

 

C.S. Lewis

We may ignore, but we can nowhere evade the presence of God. The world is crowded with Him. He walks everywhere incognito.

A Mind Awake: An Anthology of C. S. Lewis, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

 

C.S. Lewis

The real test of being in the presence of God is, that you either forget about yourself altogether or see yourself as a small, dirty object.

A Mind Awake: An Anthology of C. S. Lewis, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

 

C.S. Lewis

We only learn to behave ourselves in the presence of God.

Max Lucado

Don’t equate the presence of God with a good mood or a pleasant temperament. God is near whether you are happy or not.

Twitter post from Sep 07, 2013.

Alexander MacLaren

Peace comes not from the absence of trouble, but from the presence of God.

MacLaren’s Commentary- Expositions of Holy Scripture, Delmarva Publications, Inc.

Thomas Merton

God, Who is everywhere, never leaves us. Yet He seems sometimes to be present, sometimes to be absent. If we do not know Him well, we do not realize that He may be more present to us when He is absent than when He is present.

No Man Is an Island.

Thomas Merton

Just remaining quietly in the presence of God, listening to Him, being attentive to Him, requires a lot of courage and know-how.

Contemplation in a World of Action: Second Edition, University of Notre Dame Press.

Armand Nicholi

We may ignore, but we cannot evade, the presence of God. The world is crowded with him. He walks everywhere incognito. And the incognito is not always easy to penetrate. The real labor is to remember to attend.

The Question of God.

Henri Nouwen

Joy and laughter are the gifts of living in the presence of God and trusting that tomorrow is not worth worrying about.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Joy is the infallible sign of the presence of God.

Teresa of Avila

We are always in the presence of God, yet it seems to me that those who pray are in His presence in a very different sense.

The Life of St. Teresa of Avila, Cosimo, Inc.

N.T. Wright

To recognize that the Psalms call us to pray and sing at the intersections of the times–of our time and God’s time, of the then, and the now, and the not yet–is to understand how those emotions are to be held within the rhythm of a life lived in God’s presence.”

The Case for the Psalms: Why They Are Essential.

Augustine of Hippo

Late have I loved you, Beauty so ancient and so new, late have I loved you! Lo, you were within, but I outside, seeking there for you, and upon the shapely things you have made I rushed headlong, I, misshapen. You were with me, but I was not with you. They held me back far from you, those things which would have no being were they not in you. You called, shouted, broke through my deafness; you flared, blazed, banished my blindness; you lavished your fragrance, I gasped, and now I pant for you; I tasted you, and I hunger and thirst; you touched me, and I burned for your peace.

The Confessions

Bernard Of Clairvaux

Jesus the very thought of Thee

With sweetness fills my breast;

But sweeter far Thy face to see,

And in Thy presence rest.

Frederick Buechner

There is no event so commonplace but that God is present within it, always hiddenly, always leaving you room to recognize him or not . . . because in the last analysis all moments are key moments, and life itself is grace.

Listening to Your Life, Harper

Francois Fenelon

The Presence of God calms the soul, and gives it quiet and repose.

Spiritual Progress, Or, Instructions in the Divine Life of the Soul.

Francis De Sales

Several times during the day, but especially in the morning and evening, ask yourself for a moment if you have your soul in your hands or if some passion or fit of anxiety has robbed you of it…. If you have gone astray, quietly bring your soul back to the presence of God, subjecting all your affections and desires to the obedience and direction of His Divine Will.

Introduction to a Devout Life

Armand Nicholi

We may ignore, but we cannot evade, the presence of God. The world is crowded with him. He walks everywhere incognito. And the incognito is not always easy to penetrate. The real labor is to remember to attend.

The Question of God

Saint Patrick

I rise today
with the power of God to pilot me,
God’s strength to sustain me,
God’s wisdom to guide me,
God’s eye to look ahead for me,
God’s ear to hear me,
God’s word to speak for me,
God’s hand to protect me,
God’s way before me,
God’s shield to defend me,
God’s host to deliver me,
from snares of devils,
from evil temptations,
from nature’s failings,
from all who wish to harm me,
far or near,
alone and in a crowd.

Saint Patrick’s Breastplate

Gordon Smith

It is inconceivable to think that God would give us so much to do that we can no longer spend extended time with Him.

On the Way: A Guide to Christian Spirituality (Colorado Springs: NavPress, 2001), 72.

Edith Humphrey

The great pattern of life is the ecstasy and intimacy of God, who went out of the self to the extreme point, and so dwells among us in an intimacy we can hardly imagine.

Ecstasy and Intimacy: When the Holy Spirit Meets the Human Spirit (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2006), p. 4.

John of the Cross

Live in faith and hope, though it be in darkness, for in this darkness God protects the soul. Cast your care upon God for you are His and He will not forget you. Do not think that He is leaving you alone, for that would be to wrong Him.

Augustine of Hippo

You called, shouted, broke through my deafness; you flared, blazed, banished my blindness; you lavished your fragrance, I gasped; and now I pant for you; I tasted you, and now I hunger and thirst; you touched me, and I burned for your peace.

Confessions, X, 27.

Ruth Haley Barton

Discernment is an increasing capacity to recognize and respond to the presence and activity of God—both in the ordinary moments of our lives and in the decisions we face.

Taken from Invitation to Retreat: The Gift and Necessity of Time Away with God by Ruth Haley Barton Copyright (c) 2018 by Ruth Haley Barton. Published by InterVarsity Press, Downers Grove, IL. www.ivpress.com

Ben Patterson

God always comes alongside us in our waiting and suffering.  But it is rarely to explain what is happening to us.  Rather, he comes to speak of his love for us, to assure us that he is near and to tell us what he requires of us as we wait and as we hurt. Taken from Waiting: Finding Hope When God Seems Silent by Ben Patterson Copyright (c) 1989 by Ben Patterson. Published by InterVarsity Press, Downers Grove, IL. www.ivpress.com

John of the Cross

Live in faith and hope, though it be in darkness, for in this darkness God protects the soul. Cast your care upon God for you are His and He will not forget you. Do not think that He is leaving you alone, for that would be to wrong Him.

John Climacus

The friend of silence draws near to God.

The Ladder of Divine Ascent (London: Faber & Faber, 1959), 135.

Brother Lawrence

I still believe that all spiritual life consists of practicing God’s presence, and that anyone who practices correctly will soon attain spiritual fulfillment…. There is no sweeter manner of living in the world than continuous communion with God.

The Practice of the Presence of God (New Kensington, Pa.: Whitaker House, 1982), p.29.

Thomas Merton

Life is this simple. We are living in a world that is absolutely transparent and God is shining through all the time. This is not just a fable or a nice story.  It is true. If we abandon ourselves to God and forget ourselves, we see it sometimes, and we see it maybe frequently. God shows himself everywhere, in everything- in people and in things and in nature and in events. It becomes very obvious that God is everywhere and in everything and we cannot be without him. It’s impossible. The only thing is that we don’t see it.

Life And Solitude (tapes)

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