Many years ago I had an experience that I have shared with only a few people. Lately I have had the urge to write down what I can remember in hopes that others might be encouraged.
In the early seventies my life was dramatically changed by a series of events which brought me to a place of brokenness before God. I believed in Him from childhood, but in many ways rebelled against His will for my life. Now I was ready to give Him the reins of my life and to trust Him with my future more than ever before. At this time I became obsessed with the truth of Who Jesus really was. My eyes were just beginning to open to the spiritual realities that surrounded me, but ultimately it was the Person of Christ Himself Who would become the center of my universe.
The story of the man Jesus was quite familiar to me, and the sense that He was divine was definitely conveyed when I read the Revelation shared with John. But there came a time when I felt the overwhelming need to know for sure Who He really was. This hunger must have come from Him, for He certainly came to fulfill it. This along with many personal problems led me to regular fasting, sometimes for up to 3 entire days. Fasting seemed to help me clear my mind from the stresses of that time and probably prepared me for what was to come.
To the best of my memory and ability I would like to describe what eventually happened. One day I was home from work and alone after putting my infant son to bed. So I turned on the TV to see Richard Roberts, the son of evangelist Oral Roberts, singing and dancing with his wife Patty. The show was not at all religious. In fact it was typical of many variety shows at that time. As I sat there, a wonderful peace began to come over me. I began to feel light and relaxed in a way that was new to me.
Perhaps days or weeks before, I had an experience where even the world seemed fresh and new to me. This, however was different in that I was truly “caught up” in the Spirit of God for a prolonged period of time. I could go to work, speak to people, go out to lunch with fellow workers, and yet still feel I was in another dimension. It was the first time I really experienced what David must have when He wrote:
“Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
It is high, I cannot attain it.
Where can I go from Your Spirit?
Or where can I flee from Your presence?
If I ascend into heaven, You are there;
If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there.
If I take the wings of the morning,
And dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
Even there Your hand shall lead me,
And Your right hand shall hold me.”
Somehow I became personally aware of how Christ is everywhere, how He fills all things, and how all things are held together by Him! When I read the writings in the Scripture concerning Him, I felt this wonderful kinship with Abraham, Moses, David, Isaiah, Peter, Paul and others who all had a similar experience! Jesus is real and alive, and more than that, He is God the Creator of this universe!
Before, all the scriptures that expressed this went virtually unnoticed by me. Now it seemed as though every page was about Him. The ancient Greek word for revelation means to have something unveiled. At this time in my life Jesus was being unveiled to me. I cannot describe how liberating and empowering this was. I do know that my problems became much smaller as he became much larger to me!
This sensation of being caught up into heavenly places persisted for some time. For how long I cannot now say, but I do remember quite clearly a sort of climax that was reached. I was lying in bed one night wondering how far into the Spiritual realm I could go. In my mind I felt myself traveling out into space, and knowing that He was there as well. Then suddenly, fear came over me and I came back to the physical world. I Still don’t know how to interpret that, but I remember my heart was pounding, and at the same time I wondered what great thing I might have discovered had I continued.
In that period of my life I came across many others who had been touched by supernatural experiences like this one. We were like the people in Sci-fi stories who gravitated to one another because they all saw strange things in the sky. What we experienced was not our idea. We found ourselves permanently marked by the knowledge that there is much more to reality than is commonly known. It was not until much later that I learned that these kinds of experiences were not as common among Christians as I had thought.
Stories like this one of course do not prove that some people are better or more spiritual than others. I only hope they can inspire faith in the hearts of people who find themselves swallowed up in the cares of daily life. Christ can reveal Himself in a special way to you as well. He can show you how insignificant these things are in comparison to one minute in his glorious Presence!