By Kris Vallotton
01 Oct, 2021
Has your heart longed for an encounter; a moment where God walks on the scene and radically changes everything? We hear the terms “God encounters” or “encountering the Holy Spirit” often in our environment — they have been a part of the Bethel culture from the start. The word encounter has been a word used to try to explain the experience we have as believers when the Holy Spirit touches us and impacts our lives. But, I want to challenge you, have encounters become glorified moments and grand monuments in our lives? Have we limited encountering God to a physical manifestation and ignored the work He has done on the inside? The danger with the word encounter occurs when we ascribe it to one kind of event — when we limit the power of God to our personal history and our own preferred understanding. When we trap the power of God in our preferred comfortability and popular conformity we forget we serve a God far larger than the encounters we see happen in the sanctuary on Sundays. For years I questioned if I was truly encountering God, because I saw others around me experiencing the Lord through what seemed to be powerful encounters. They would fall down, be slain in the Spirit, and roll over in uncontrollable laughter, but this wasn’t the way God encountered me. I did not experience physical manifestations or uncontrollable emotions. But, the truth is I have encountered God ever since I have been saved; He has met me and ministered to me in ways beyond physical manifestations of His grace. I understand the shame you can feel when your encounters don’t “look” the same, but I would challenge you to adjust your view and become aware you are living under an open Heaven and you were made for the Presence of God; He is eager to encounter you! In this week’s video blog Hayley Braun joined me to discuss encountering God. Hayley is a Senior Leader at Bethel Church and the Associate Overseer of BSSM online .