Today my friends and I were intentionally engaging our hearts with the Lord by practicing different ways to interact with Him. We focused on the following:
1. Engaging our bodies (strength)
2. Engaging mentally (minds)
3. Engaging our souls
4. Engaging our Spirits
We practiced engaging all of these areas, because Jesus told us in the Scriptures to love Him with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength.
And one of the scribes came up and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that he answered them well, asked him, “Which commandment is the most important of all?” Jesus answered, “The most important is, ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ Mark 12: 28-31
I feel like the Lord has given me practical tools to help engage my heart, body, soul, and Spirit with Him in my practical, every day life and I would like to share them with you!
DO try this at home!
Depending on your personality, what you are comfortable with, how you engage with the Lord and how you engage with people, some of these may really benefit you in helping you to engage. Others may not. The ones that are not beneficial to you right now may be beneficial in another season of life or for someone else. If something specific really relates to you and helps you to interact with the Lord, do that! If another idea does not work, it does not mean the Lord does not want to speak with you. Just put that idea to the side for the time being and choose to engage another way with the Lord.
I tend to engage with the Lord differently based upon the seasons of my life. That’s ok. Interacting with the Lord is good and if it seems to change throughout seasons of your life, it’s probably because it is. No problem. Our relationships with people change. Our relationship with the Lord changes. It doesn’t mean it’s bad. It is just ever molding.
Engaging Your Body
I. Interact with the Lord in different positions
A. Sit with the Lord
When I sit with the Lord, it is often relaxing and I feel like I don’t have to say or do anything. I can just be and it’s fine. It’s a practice, for me, of just being with the Lord without any obligation. It reminds me that we’re friends and that we can just hang out and not have to do anything. We can just enjoy one another’s company.
B. Stand with the Lord
When I’m standing with the Lord, I’m usually making a conscious decision to talk to Him about something specific. I may be asking Him questions or waiting on Him for what I am going to do next. Whatever it is, I often feel like I am “standing my ground” and making a conscious effort to obey Him.
C. Walk with the Lord
Sometimes when I’m walking with the Lord, it’s just to “shoot the breeze” and catch up on life. Depending on where it is and what I’m thinking about, it can also look like a “mall walk” where I know I have a destination and a point to the walk – a work out. These walks tend to help me process through things I’m stressed about or really need to talk to the Lord about. Typically, I’m venting to Him during these walks and just need to get everything out while my body is in motion.
D. Kneel to the Lord
One time, I remember praying for a specific people group who knows God religiously but doesn’t know Him as Father. I felt as though God were asking me to pray on my knees. I was praying, face down to the ground, on my knees, and I realized, in this position, I recognized God as both Judge and King, but not as my Bridegroom or as my Father or as my Friend. Some of my favorite characteristics of the Lord were not acknowledged as I was in this position. Because of this, I was able to intercede even more so for this people group as I realized they may not know the God I know. I prayed they would be able to know God as Papa, as Friend, and as Bridegroom.
I like praying to God while I am on my knees. (Although, sometimes I wish I had knee pads and it kind of hurts to be honest. I’m not even old, either.) It is good for me to remember to fear the Lord by looking at Him as my Judge and as my King. There is a time for this kind of revelation, and being on my knees helps me to pray and see Him this way.
E. Hands Raised, Outstretched
One of my favorite things to do when I interact with the Lord is to use my hands. Often times, my hands will be raised and in the air to show that I am worshiping Him fully with wholehearted abandoned. Sometimes it’s also a reminder to my surrender everything to Him. Sometimes it’s helpful for me to raise my hands as an act of obedience to give Him every single thing I have and to remind myself that when I said He was my Lord and Savior I was serious about Him having all of me.
F. Lying on your back
It’s great for me to turn soaking music on (try the Helser’s Endless Oceans, United Pursuit Band’s song “In Your Love”, or Housefires songs “Good, good Father” or “This Love”) and to let Truth wash over me. For me, it’s just a form of receiving and soaking in the Lord’s presence.
G. Lying on your face before Him
Lying face down on the ground before the Lord reminds me of seeking the Lord by dropping everything and petitioning Him with all of our emotion. It also reminds me of being in awe of the Lord, as it makes me think of where John, the guy in the Bible who wrote Revelation and John and John 1, 2, and 3, and called himself the “one whom Jesus loved” John 13:23, fell down before the Lord as though dead. John 1:17
I LOVE dancing! Lately, it has felt very victorious to dance. It helps me to engage with the Lord, and it is currently one of my favorite ways to engage. It hasn’t always been this way, and this is a new season for me but it’s fun and I’m embracing it! 🙂 Zephaniah 3:17 says the Lord will rejoice over you WITH GLADNESS (emphasis my own). If the Lord rejoices over ME with gladness, then I want to rejoice over HIM with gladness! I want to be like Him! 🙂 The Lord spoke to me recently about this verse and said that He is ‘joyfully loud and publicly scenic’ when He rejoices over me.
There was this picture of a public place like Times Square where many people are all over and the Lord is in the middle spinning, singing and dancing joyfully, as He is LOUDLY declaring His love for me, unashamedly making a huge public scene of His display of affection. The Lord is good at PDA! Public displays of affection! He LOVES to LOVE His people LOUDLY! I receive it and I dance LOUDLY over Him as well! It’s great! 🙂
I. Hands in a receiving position
Many times when my friends and I pray for each other, we will have our hands out to receive from the Lord. It’s a reminder to me that the Lord does want to give things to me and that He has things for me. It says in the Bible that God is my Father and that He has good things to give me, even more so than a good earthly dad would have good things to give me. As an act of faith, I like to hold my hands out to show the Lord that I really do want to receive these good and perfect gifts from Him. I love my Heavenly Father and His gifts are sooooooooooooooo good!!! Matthew 7:7-12
J. Breathing deeply
A lot of times I will breathe deeply during my soaking times, because it helps me to relax and it helps me to think of the Holy Spirit. I remember that I am breathing only by the grace of God and that the very Creator who made me is allowing me to breathe. I remember the Holy Spirit within me is powerful and is sustaining me to even be alive and to breathe the very breath I’m breathing as I intake and exhale.
These are all great ways I’ve interacted with the Lord by intentionally engaging my body. The Lord gave me my body and filled me with the Holy Spirit in order that I could use my body (all of my strength) to worship Him.
What are ways you have engaged with the Lord?
What atmosphere is most helpful for you in this season of your life to help you to engage with the Lord?
There is more to come on this topic, but the focus will probably be on engaging the mind, the soul, the Spirit, or on all of the above!
Feel free to use, share, or teach any of these ideas to others if they were helpful! The Lord loves you! Blessings and complete peace, my brothers and sisters! 🙂