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This quarter, we focus on the baptism with the Holy Spirit in our devotional series. This week's devotional comes from John 20 – 21 and Matt. 1 – 5.

I've been seeing a spiritual director lately. I was opening up to her and told her I was a little tired.

I've read the Bible through cover to cover for years. I've practiced S.O.A.P. (Scripture, Observation, Application, Prayer) devotions. I've read devotionals by the masters. And I said: “What else can I do? I just love Him so much, and I want to know Him better. I feel like I've hardly scratched the surface.”

She turned to me and asked: “Do you know He longs to be with you? Do you know how much He wants to just sit with you and be with you?”

Like any Christian, I replied, “Sure, I know.” But something in me began to thaw or, more accurately, to shatter. I've told people for years how passionately Jesus loves them and how He died to have fellowship with them—but do I believe it for myself?

I thought of the apostle Paul saying, in essence, “just because you preach it doesn't mean you live it.”

Then, there’s that little issue of Matt. 5:48, the last verse in this week’s Bible reading, where Jesus told His disciples, “Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect” (NKJV).

Perfect? Are you kidding me?

So, I quit. I quit trying to impress the Lord. I quit trying to constantly produce. And I just sat in the presence of the Lord and let the Holy Spirit love me. I just sat and basked in the love and pleasure of Jesus, my best friend in the world.

How do I build a life around the presence of the Lord? Here's what I'm hearing from the Spirit of Truth:

  1. Surrender to His presence. Just be quiet. Stop “doing,” and surrender to the fact that the God of the universe lives in me. He is closer to me than the air I breathe and will never leave me.
  2. Learn of His presence. What do every sermon I hear, every book I read and every devotion I have teach me of the One who has made me His tabernacle? What does it teach me about Immanuel, God with us?
  3. Practice His presence every day, in every way. I think of Brother Lawrence in his monastery. Stuck with the gross job of washing pans, it became his hour of agony—until he determined to wash each pan as an act of worship. That sink became an altar, and each evening the presence of the Lord descended.

May each action and every duty become an act of worship, and may the greatest joy of my life become time spent with God—the Spirit of Truth.

It's getting fun again.

By: Robert Flores, president of Life Pacific College in San Dimas, Calif.

Share your journey through the Gospels » Leave a comment below to share what God is showing you personally as the Foursquare family reads through the Gospels! Download the reading plan bookmarks for 2012, and you can also subscribe to the weekly Foursquare Leader Prayer email to receive insights and inspiration from Foursquare leaders around the world.

is a freelance writer living in Long Beach, Calif.