Places of Encounter with God

“Prayer rooms are places of direct encounter with God. So much of our faith, if we are not very careful, can be second-hand experience. We listen to talks that tell us what to think. We read books that inspire us with other peoples’ experiences of God. But alone with God in a prayer room, it’s time to get the Bible open for your self, going straight to the source. It’s time to dialogue directly with God face to face without a middleman. In such a context, God often is able to speak to us and touch us in a way that no ministry session could ever achieve.”

Isn’t a face-to-face encounter with God something you long for and desire? When I was in Germany, I was involved in teaching a course for God’s people who were working in different countries around the world. The course was called “Face to Face.” The goal of the course was to help bring individuals into a face-to-face relationship with God and also with one another.

The prayer room is the place of face-to-face encounter with God. I can’t think of a better description of the 24/7 prayer movement. The prayer room is the place to access the heavenly realm and hear from God. In the prayer room God purifies our life. As you and I spend time in prayer, we carry the very presence of God out with us into the world. Our faces can shine with the presence of God.

Moses is a good example of a Biblical character that sought the face of God. We read about his encounter with God in Exodus 33:11a: The Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as one speaks to a friend. When he came down from the presence of God, His face actually shone with the glory of God.

“When Moses came down from Mount Sinai with the two tablets of the covenant law in his hands, he was not aware that his face was radiant because he had spoken with the LORD” (Exodus 34:29). 

There is an increasing hunger for the presence of God, not only individually but also corporately among His people worldwide. People from all denominations, cultures, and ages are beginning to seek after God’s face. Kim Catherine Marie Kollins has established a 24/7 prayer ministry among the world’s 100 million renewed Catholics called Burning Bush International.  She says:

“Everywhere I turn I seem to hear this same call to prayer being proclaimed—prayer for cities, prayer for nations. Everywhere I look I see writings calling the people of God to intense worship and adoration and intercession. Many new prayer initiatives are being called forth—houses of prayer are springing up, prayer mountains and prayer vigils are being held in response to this prompting of the Holy Spirit. Now is the time, and the trumpet is being sounded to the whole people of God. We are being called to awaken from slumber and be empowered anew by the Holy Spirit. We must become once again passionate adorers of the Lord and powerful instruments of intercession for the Church and the world.” 

God Radically Changes Us in the Prayer Room

When we stand in the presence of God, He does a radical work within our hearts. He removes the sin in our lives as we sit in His presence. When diagnosed with cancer, I learned about the power of radiation and chemotherapy because these are the primary ways the medical world treats cancer. Thankfully I didn’t have to have either one. Sin is like cancer. God’s presence is like radiation therapy on the cancer of sin in our lives. The more we are in His presence, the more powerful the radiation of His life and love. We change in His presence because we are exposing ourselves to the eternal forces of His radiating glory. We begin to die to the sin tendencies in our lives, and we begin to live more fully for Him.

Time in God’s presence is powerful.

“You most likely won’t realize it at first. A person who is exposed to the radiation of the sun’s rays often does not realize that he is sunburned until later. When you spend time in God’s presence, you may feel you are not accomplishing anything. The enemy may say something like this to you, “You’re just wasting your time. God won’t listen to you.”

But if you continue spending extravagant amounts of time in His presence, you will begin to see His life manifested through yours. It takes time, but everything within you begins to change—your desires, thoughts, actions, interests, and passions.

There is no quicker way to change as in the glory and radiation of His presence. I have seen people change right before my eyes as I watch them over time through exposure to God’s presence. We read in
1 Chronicles 16:11 and Psalm 105:4: Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always. Dr. Timothy John shares a personal testimony about how important 24/7 prayer has been in a small, inner-city church:

“Launching and sustaining a 24-7 prayer room in one of our inner city church properties has probably been the most important thing we have done to date. From inner city youth to suburban “boomers,” each person has profoundly experienced the manifest presence and love of God in their selected hour of prayer in our holy space. Some of our members have actually encountered the Holy Spirit in the parking lot or even on their way to the prayer room. Needless to say, this has resulted in a wonderful spiritual renewal in our midst. Eternity and the heavenly realm are no longer concepts but reality.”

It is the place to leave the problems of earth behind and listen to the still small voice of God in such a way that inner transformation occurs. It happens individually and corporately. I have seen it in myself and in others. You can’t stand in the presence of God without being changed. Most of us are busy people. You can’t spend time in the prayer room without having it change your prayer life. Prayer becomes a delightful reality.

“One of the great things about a well-led season of 24-7 prayer is that it helps busy people like you and me to live up to our aspirations in prayer. It can even enable non-church-goers to prioritize prayer in their daily lives… 24-7 prayer is able to turn the idea of daily prayer from a guilty “should” into an exciting “could.” Suddenly, a regular hour or more of solitude for personal prayer and Scriptural meditation becomes a delightful reality for people who normally don’t find such things easy—people in ordinary places who desperately need an extraordinary outpouring of prayer and a deeper discovery of the glory of God.”

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