If there is one thing that the prophetic ministry will bring both to the Church and to the individual, it is the realisation of the nearness of God.
It is one thing to hear great encouragement about God’s intention to bless, restore or intervene, but to hear the assertion that God is with us, is another thing.
To know that the Lord is our ‘Immanuel’ is profoundly good news, and what courage it brings to the weary heart to know that they are not alone. Sometimes however, there is another profound revelation that can cause vast oceans of joy to erupt in the human spirit. It is the disclosure of God in the deepest recesses of the heart that He is with you, really with you – and it comes in what I call, “the Jacob-thought”.
Genesis 28 tells us of Jacob’s encounter with God. The Bible tells us that when he had reached ‘a certain place’, he stopped for the night because the sun had set. The next morning he would name that insignificant, nothing-out-of-the-ordinary place, Bethel. In the seemingly insignificant place he found himself in, unawares of the astonishing event that would shortly take place, he took one of the stones there for a pillow and lay down to sleep. As he slept he had a dream in which he saw a stairway resting on the earth, with its top reaching to heaven, and the angels of God were ascending and descending on it.
The next morning, profoundly shaken by his encounter with God, he named the place Bethel (House of God), exclaiming “Surely the Lord is in this place, and I was not aware of it”. And there is the exciting truth that comes when we encounter God, He is there!
How excellent is the truth that can liberate our heart in this day and age, that the Lord may be so very close to us, and we are not aware of it.
The Jacob-thought is so precious. No matter what you face in life, no matter what mountain you face, wall you must climb or discouragement you must conquer – the revelation that God is with you and in your circumstance and you might not be aware of it, is an encouragement from the heart of God Himself.
We walk with the truth that all things work together for our good, that God is with us and that nothing can separate us from His wonderful love – but we also have the great joy of reminding ourselves both in the great times and the hard times, of the Jacob-thought.
Are you aware right now that the Lord is geographically with you, at this very moment!
Remind yourself often of this wonderful truth that the place you are in may look very normal, and unexceptional, but it has the potential to become a ‘Bethel’ to you.
It may not always feel as if God is with you, but no matter who you are, the Lord is in your place and you are not always aware of it!
Think the Jacob-thought!