Tag Archives: Divine presence

What if God doesn’t want us to do life for Him?

Back on Mother’s Day my daughter Mykaela and I were discussing different aspects of a relationship with God when she made a familiar statement.

“I want to do life for God in a way that pleases Him.”

Life with GodI’ve made that same statement countless times and was delighted to hear her express such a God-honoring sentiment. But this time it triggered a peculiar thought.

Doing life for someone typically happens when that person is absent or bed-ridden with illness or even dead. You know, like “Win one for the Gipper.” But since God isn’t absent or sick or dead, maybe there’s an even better option.

Maybe God would prefer that we do life with  Him rather than for Him.

Just before His departure and return to the Father Jesus said, “I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20) Jesus was speaking of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit which He describes in John 14:15-23. And Paul said, “For in him we live and move and have our being.” (Acts 17:28)

I used Mother’s Day as an example and explained that instead of planning the meals and special activities for Susan, I planned them with Susan. I got her input on what she would most enjoy.

It’s not a bad thing to take 10 minutes at the start of a day to talk with God and commit to living for Him. But how might our days go differently if we went into them with the awareness of God’s presence; of doing life with Him?

Even our most God-honoring plans for any given day will have twists and turns thrown into the mix. If I’m doing life for God with a set agenda then these twists and turns will likely aggravate me as unwanted intrusions. (Quite often they do!)

But if I approach each day with God then perhaps He’ll give me grace for the unexpected or even use them to redirect me toward a divine encounter I hadn’t planned on.

Prayer keeps us connected to God so that we can do life with Him at any given moment. And He delights in doing life with His children!


© Richard Alvey and iLife Journey, 2014. All rights reserved.


Filed under Children of God, Divine presence, God the Father, God's Will, Holy Spirit, intimacy with the Lord, Prayer, Relationship with God, Religion and Spirituality

In the Silence

Deck into the woods“In the silence of the heart God speaks. If you face God in prayer and silence, God will speak to you. Then you will know that you are nothing. It is only when you realize your nothingness, your emptiness, that God can fill you with Himself. Souls of prayer are souls of great silence.”
~ Mother Teresa


Filed under Christianity, Divine presence, God, Prayer, Religion and Spirituality

Like a Treasure Buried

This Beautiful Mess“Jesus’ kingdom invites us to immerse ourselves in the whole gospel He came to preach. We get to listen and consider and think through the staggering possibilities of kingdom living as Jesus taught it. The practical promise of our faith journey together is this: as we live in fidelity to Christ the King, His in-breaking reign will have a transformational effect on us, our communities, and our world. Anything less is not what Jesus came to earth to tell.

In a mysterious yet absolutely real way, the kingdom of Jesus is here now and in power. Like gravity or high-frequency radio waves, this kingdom doesn’t require our attention or consent in order to exist. It just is. Still, I think you’ll find that we have to learn—and deeply want—to see and imagine in new ways. Otherwise we’ll miss it. So many have. Because it is like a treasure buried.”

~ Excerpted from This Beautiful Mess by Rick McKinley

“Lord, may Your Spirit make me sensitive to your activities today so that I can be a part of furthering Your kingdom here on earth.”


© Richard Alvey and iLife Journey, 2013. All rights reserved.



Filed under Christianity, Discipleship, Divine presence, God, Holy Spirit, influence with the world, Jesus, Kingdom of God, Relationship with God, Religion and Spirituality, Spiritual formation

Whom Shall I Fear – Chris Tomlin

This has quickly become one of my favorite worship songs and is a powerful profession of faith in God.


The story behind this song is amazing!

What is it that you need to trust God about today?


© Richard Alvey and iLife Journey, 2013. All rights reserved.


Filed under Chris Tomlin, Christianity, Divine presence, Faith, God, Music Video, Praise, Relationship with God, Religion and Spirituality, Trusting God, Worship

The Focus of Your Life

More Jesus - Less Religion - Book CoverWhen Jesus walked this earth, he worked to get the focus off “good” people doing what appeared to be “good things” and to get their focus back on God. Many people in first-century Israel were pointing to the rules; Jesus pointed to a God who wanted a relationship with his people. Religious professionals focused on the law; Jesus focused on the Lawgiver who knew our hearts and offered us grace in the midst of our failures.

A healthy, growing faith is always focused on the person of God himself, not on cheap substitutes. A healthy faith begins and ends in God, not in rules or regulations or sheer, raw duty. Jesus, not religion, is at the core of a robust Christian faith.

Today Jesus offers you and me the same opportunity he gave to those people in the early church. Oh, we can still perform and conform out of obligation. We can still try to feel good by all the “good deeds” we chalk up.

Or we can love God with all our heart, mind, and soul. We can experience his love and come to know him intimately. We can stop hiding behind our facades of religious order and meet him right where we are. We can focus on him and find sanity, rest, and peace when all hell seems to be breaking out around us.

I urge you to experience for yourself his love and acceptance. Grow closer to him and choose him because you truly love him. Make him—not your “good deeds” nor anyone or anything else—the focus of your life.

I promise…you will never regret it.

~ Excerpted from More Jesus, Less Religion by Stephen Arterburn and Jack Felton

What will be the focus of our life in this new week?


© Richard Alvey and iLife Journey, 2013. All rights reserved.



Filed under Choices, Christianity, Divine presence, God, intimacy with the Lord, Jesus, Love of God, Loving God, Relationship with God, Religion and Spirituality

Oh Church, where art thou?

“The church is Christ’s body, in which he speaks and acts, by which he fills everything with his presence.”
~ Ephesians 1:23 (The Message)


God longs to fill every nook and cranny  of this earth with His presence. Every home in every neighborhood. Every classroom in every school. Every office in every building. Every store in every city.


And the way that God intends to accomplish such an enormous task is by sending you and me out into our little part of the world to take His presence with us wherever we go.

Suppose someone asks you about the location of the church you’re a part of; how would you reply?

Would you simply give them a street address or would you tell them that it depends on the day and time.

On Monday morning the church is:

  • Teaching in a classroom…
  • Driving a supply truck…
  • Answering phones in an office…
  • Nurturing children in the home…
  • Carrying books to class…
  • Tending to the needs of patients…
  • Drawing up house plans…
  • Filling a prescription…

Wherever it is that you and I are going today; whatever it is that we are doing; God wants us to be His presence – His hands and feet of grace and truth and love to those we encounter along the way.

Will we be the church today?


© Richard Alvey and iLife Journey, 2013. All rights reserved.


Filed under Christianity, Church, Divine presence, God, influence with the world, Religion and Spirituality

Can every day be an adventure?

Wild Goose ChaseWhen we don’t pace ourselves, we tend to miss divine appointments right and left. In fact, they seem like human interruptions. We get so consumed with trying to get where we think God wants us to go that we put on spiritual blinders and miss the Goose trails He wants to take us down. The key is slowing down your pace, taking off your sandals, and experiencing God right here, right now.

…Spiritual maturity has less to do with long-range visions than it does with moment-by-moment sensitivity to the promptings of the Holy Spirit. And it is our moment-by-moment sensitivity to the Holy Spirit that turns life into an everyday adventure.
~ Excerpted from Wild Goose Chase   by Mark Batterson

I know!

I get it!

Most of the stuff that fills our days seems like anything BUT an adventure.

  • The same job…
  • The same spouse and kids…
  • The same co-workers…
  • The same neighbors…
  • The same house chores…
  • The same ol’ same ol’…

But what if these ordinary, everyday circumstances are not the main ingredient to life being an adventure?

If God is “with us always” as Jesus promised then He is with us even in the midst of these seemingly mundane moments. And how can any moment where God’s presence is available be anything but an adventure?

Perhaps we are too focused on our circumstances and not focused enough on learning to live in the awareness of God’s presence?

May today be a brand new adventure with God!


© Richard Alvey and iLife Journey, 2013. All rights reserved.

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Filed under Adventure, Christianity, Discipleship, Divine presence, God, Holy Spirit, intimacy with the Lord, Jesus, Relationship with God, Religion and Spirituality