Does a spiritual encounter have to be high-inducing?

bestillFor me, the answer is no.  I see so many social-media posts promising “earth-shaking” and “life-changing” services and meetings.  And while I have been to many such services, I have also attended many simple, quiet moments and gatherings in which the still, simple preciousness of the Divine emerges from unexpected places.  Instead of a “boom,” I sense a “calm,” and it’s wonderful.

Years ago, my dad wrote an important article on this topic.  He called it the “Cardboard Elvis” (see it here).  His argument was that in our spiritual journey, it’s easy to confuse exhilaration with exaltation.  Indeed, in our quest to worship, to transform, and to be—it’s understandable that we might confuse emotion with essence.

While understandable, it’s also tragic.  Genuine experiences with the Divine far supersede the temporary and empty promises of a high.

They empower us to find places of meaning embedded in worlds that seem to have no meaning.

They enlighten, encourage, and edify.

They challenge, correct, and convince.

As you experience your faith, your church, your spiritual practice, I encourage you to ask yourself, as I do: “What do I seek here?”

And then be still—and listen—and know.

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