How to Have a Direct Experience of God
By Father Peter Bowes

Many say they believe in God, but believing in God is not the same as having a direct experience of God. Direct means first-hand, not second-hand. It is not hearsay or conjecture. Direct means something happens to you. You go through something, and then you can say you have had an experience. Throughout history, belief in God has resulted in people gathering for worship in churches, mosques, and temples. All over the world people still congregate based on similar beliefs about God. But how many can really say they know God?

Love and faith are the two most important qualities that make a substantial relationship with God possible. Love pulls you to the Divine Being; faith expects that something real will happen. Love connects you and God together; faith brings trust that God will respond to your hopes. Love creates the opening for something genuine to occur in relationship with God; faith reaches out beyond what is comfortable, stretching you to feel and see what you long for with your whole heart, mind and soul.

A direct experience of God requires love and faith, both of which play integral roles in preparing you to meet God. With love and faith, you let the Divine Being know you care enough so that God will come and give you God's Self. You have to silence the mind and the emotions, and develop a stillness that can wait for a response from God. With meditation and prayer, a person can clear the mind of the world and the distractions of the senses in preparation for this meeting with God. God will come when you have cleared away all the other gods in your life, and this takes work, patience and diligent effort.

The initial phase of this preparation can be somewhat discouraging because the most dark and detrimental parts of your nature show up for review. You just can't ask God to come into a place soiled with dirt, confusion and negative energy, so you will have to make a clean and wholesome space before you invite God to reside in you. Often you will need a Teacher – someone who has had a direct experience of God, who can see what needs to be drawn out of you – to help you clear the space within you.

All the mystics and saints have described direct experience of God in much the same ways. Each describes experiencing the love of their life in the embrace of God's kiss and God's presence. No fear can exist in the presence of God since God is all love and light. God is inside you and is loving you with every ounce you are willing to receive, and this experience will move you from belief to knowing. When you come into a direct experience of the God at the center of your being, it will change you completely, and you will know a profound peace that cannot be disturbed by the confusion of the world.

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To learn more about Father Peter Bowes, visit FatherPeter.CentersOfLight.org.
www.CentersOfLight.org.

Author's Bio: 

FATHER PETER BOWES
is a Christian mystic, ordained priest, Master Teacher of Christian mysticism and the co-director of a mystical Christian Order and school that has spiritual centers called, Centers of Light in 15 cities. In 1999, he co-founded the Order with Mother Clare Watts, who is also a Priest and Teacher. He is the author of 3 books entitled "The Word Within”, “The Radical Path” and “Spiritual Astrology”. Father Peter received his Masters and Doctoral degrees from Indiana University in Educational Psychology and practiced psychology for many years. He travels nationally every week to give seminars on the Inner Path. He has also been a featured guest on several radio broadcast programs. He devotes his time to teaching, writing and creating devotional music. On his website, www.askfatherpeter.com he reads from his book, “The Word Within” as well as other topics of interest to the spiritual seeker, such as, “Quieting the Mind” and “Beginning the Spiritual Path”.
In addition, Father Peter has written and recorded 11 successful CD’s of devotional music. Infusing folk/rock with the essence of ancient Christian Mystical experience, his songs give the listener a deep sensation of God’s Divine presence, evoking an inner response to God’s love and opening minds to the great reality of the spiritual world. Visit www.sophia-records.com to hear his music.