What Is Your Experience With God?
Share Your Spiritual Story
Have you had moments you sensed the divine presence – that God was near, or in your heart? Have you prayed for guidance and felt you received it? Or have you had spiritual experiences of a different kind? What is your experience with God? Wherever your journey has taken you, we would love to hear it!
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God: An Autobiography, The Podcast- What's On Your Mind Series features letters from listeners and readers who share their spiritual triumphs, struggles, and questions.
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God: An Autobiography, As Told To A Philosopher has inspired a diverse community of seekers, philosophers, theologians, and thinkers, diving headfirst into the conversation about God and spiritual living.
139 thoughts on “What Is Your Experience with God?”
Janet F April 21, 2021
I don’t know where to begin. There’s been so much, and so many questions.
When I was about 34 years old, after many many years I watched “Jesus of Nazareth” (circa 1977) once again. I remember watching Jesus in the film, and feeling like I had been hit by a lightening bolt of awareness, that I wanted to suddenly “know who THAT kind of Jesus was”. The next several years were a blur of miracles and divine happenings I find hard to explain.
Several weeks after this “awakening”, I began to “hear” instructions and words in my mind’s ear. At first I wondered if I had gone psychotic, but in one last vain attempt to find clarity, I wrote down the message I was “hearing”, and went to my pastor with it. The message was a warning of some sort for a youth pastor at the church. As I sat with the senior pastor, he told me that this was the 5th time in 2 weeks that someone had come to him with this exact message. He then said, “You have my expressed permission to be the one to give the youth pastor this message.” I was floored. I did as asked, and months later, I found out that the youth pastor had not heeded the divine warning, and was stripped of his position.
From that moment on, there’s been numerous other dreams and visions, prophetic errands and messages of hope. There are a few things I have learned: 1. There is no possible way to take credit for the divine. Circumstances will ALWAYS unfold to make sure you cannot, so that you know the action was from God. 2. The Holy Spirit is indeed like the wind. You carry a message at times, but can have no idea where it is intended to “land” until right before the person or group comes along. 3. The Satan will always attack a prophetic act (sometimes physically) before it occurs. My guess is that this proves it’s value in the grand scheme of things. 4. If you have no one to “teach” you about such things as things, the Holy Spirit himself will protect you as He teaches you personally. I’ve had many times when I’ve been saved from embarrassment due to my eagerness. 5. Knowing the difference between God and the Satan’s counterfeits is a little like splitting hairs. It is extremely subtle, but after a while of spending time with God, you will know the difference between the divine, and divination.
Though it rarely happens anymore, I have been sent to many with messages of hope, direction, or instruction. To witches, clergyman, drunks, doctors, criminals, the list goes on.
One of the most touching experiences I’ve had was once being sent to a hospital out of no where I was told to turn around, and head to a hospital nearby. I was told to tell a complete stranger who was dying there that God loves them, and wanted to save their life. I was given a name, and sure enough, someone with that name was in emerg, who I later discovered was indeed dying. A few moments after I met him, he asked me, “What is God’s name?” I answered, “Love.” He turned around in tears, asking if my being there was a joke. I said, “No. This is no joke. I was sent here to give you a beautiful message.” As I explained further, the man broke down and began to ask me questions as to who sent me, marveling that I knew his name. We spent hours together, having a conversation. At the end, I asked if he wanted prayer, but he declined. I never saw him again, unfortunately, though I think of him often, wondering if he’s still alive.
Jerry Martin April 28, 2021
Yours is a blessed experience. God sometimes picks someone to deliver a divine message or even an intervention. You have been remarkably faithful, even eager I take it, to follow through. The five lessons you have learned are perceptive, incisive, and vitally important. The story of your mission to the guy in the emergency room is deeply moving. Your following of divine directives — to turn around and go to another hospital, for example — sets an example for all of us. Your answer about God’s name — that question can be answered in many different ways, including that God has no “name” — was exactly right. In this situation, Love WAS God’s name. You may find that this pattern of being called upon for divine tasks lasts the rest of your life, or it may be a stage. I mention this because, if it doesn’t last, that is okay. It is not a cause for despair. We do God’s work when called upon to do it in some special way, then we go back to living daily life in a Godward way. Bless you!
Sandy September 22, 2021
There have been moments I’ve been down, or gone through a rough time and I’d say “God, I just need to know you’re here, that you’re with me.” It was just a prayer in my head. And soon after I felt a similar feeling you had, but different. It was more like a radiant glowing feeling from the inside. Almost like the energy from the sun was in my body or something. Really cool experience. I look at it at God delivering through his spirit a hug. That’s the only way I can figure it. Anyway, so cool you had an experience!! May God bless you!😊
Cary Knight March 30, 2021
Three times, my first time was at age 14 June 1972 around 8-9 in the morning I was coming down the stairs and I looked over the railings to see what I that was my sister clothed in a white robe, as I approached her I asked her if our dad was gone to work, this spirit turned and looked at me and that’s when I could see the face, it had the face of a middle eastern person, at first I thought it was my sister’s boyfriend because he is Hispanic and this spirit had a goatee and long hair like my sister’s boyfriend, As I came closer I was floored, it wasn’t her boyfriend but a spirit as it turned towards me it floated down the kitchen around 20-30 feet and stopped at the wall by the back door as I asked what was going on this spirit smiled and went through the brick wall, I was watching this spirit for 3-5 minutes and it never spoke a word it jus smiled at me. The second time I was around 24-25 in a dream I was swept up and taken to a Church and was shown a family member being taken to Heaven when I told the family member he just smiled and a week later he was taken. My third time I was 28-29 and again was swept up and shown another family member being taken as I told my family they just couldn’t believe it when sure enogh a family member was taken 10 days later!
Jerry Martin April 3, 2021
Cary is a fellow Abigail and I talked with when we were in Riverside for her medical treatments. He and his wife run an excellent sandwich-plus shop. They have an open air area, so we lunch there when we are in Calif. He referred to having had an unusual experience and I invited him to tell us about it. I gave him my card and invited him to post it on the God website. I am so very glad he did. The first experiences gave him a spiritual orientation for the rest of his life that shapes everything he does. The result is inner peace and a loving friendliness. Cary, I am so glad you shared your story here. It is hard in our secular age for people who have spiritual moments to give them full credit and credence. Your sharing your story empowers the spirituality of all of us. Thank you! And see you in Calif next time we come!
Larry Sledge January 27, 2021
I was asleep at night when I heard a male voice say “You need to go check your property”. There were no other men in my house. I walked thru the house til I could see the end of my driveway thru my dining room window. A car pulled up and stopped and two men got out and started walking up the driveway to the house. I turned on the front porch lights and the men immediately turned around and went back to the car and left. It is my believe God did this to stope a home invasion.
Jerry Martin February 1, 2021
Experiences like this are amazing and yet more common than we realize in our secular age. Most people do not tell them to each other, much less report them publicly. Your experience is entirely in line with God: An Autobiography, in which God expresses a personal concern with each and every one of us and is always beside us as a silent partner. Thank you, Larry, for sharing!
Claudia November 13, 2020
Hello. There is an experience I had about 5 or 6 years ago and it took me 1.5 years to even be able to process it at all. I have been saved and daily in the Word of God for 40 years. (Since I was about 20.) I have always had dreams and visions, but did not know what was going on for many years. i assumed all Christians had experiences like that with the Lord – 4 open visions, two which seemed like trances and one in which I was transported. And many dreams – some which were ‘calling’/destiny dreams. I wish I knew someone who I could share these things with…I go to church, and I love my church, but no one there is the type of Christian I would share these things with. Anyway, one particular experience is on my mind and heart tonight (the one I mentioned from 5 or 6 years ago) and I started thinking tonight that it might have been an angelic visitation. In the beginning I wouldn’t even let myself think about it (for 1.5 years) because I was being careful not to be deceived. Anyway, I (a woman) was in an abusive relationship since I was 17 years old, and I married him. I was trying to stay with him in order to keep the family together and thinking it was what the Lord wanted me to do. We split up every year or two becasue of the violence, but I knew God said that a wife is not to leave her husband, and if she does, to remain single or else go back to her husband. He was always sincerelt sorry and I went back over and over. At one point I am sure he gave his life to Christ. So 10 years ago we divorced, and i talked to a man who lived across the country online and on the phone who I’d known since I was a child. We got close. After a year, my husband and I got back together AGAIN…BTW…the ex-husband took my mothers house from me, and so part of the reason was that i longed for my moms house where I was raised by her parents.
After I went back to my ex-husband (in my house – !) things got bad again, and I missed the great conversations I had with the other man, but as a child of God, I would not even let myself think about him, and had no contact with him, and a couple of times he sent an email checking on me, but I was intentionally mean to him because i was determined to be faithful to my ex-husband…I still felt married. I believed that I was married in God’s sight.
One day while I was feeling low and seeking the Lord and standing outside, day dreaming a little, this happened: A bright, BRIGHT unearthly light surrounded me like a sphere – all around me. It was NOT earthly light. The I felt something “hit me” in my gut, and a LOUD AUTHORITATIVE voice said “You will live here with ____.” Great supernatural joy flooded my being – like that laughter of the Holy Ghost i’ve seen, and then the force of the “punch” (it did not hurt) and the joy and the loud voice BLEW ME BACKwards. I might have fallen down but there was a door behind me.
Ok….so, there is no way I can put into words the way this happened, or explain something so supernatural in earthly words. I was SHOCKED! I wondered if it was deception, except I did not want to give the devil credit for anything the Most High would say, and I also did not want to say it was the Lord if it was not! At the time, it seemed so far from what my mind was made up to do, for the glory of God, that i couldn’t even look at it or think about it. I was determined NOT to be deceived.
A year and a half later, I finally had the courage to ask the Lord about it. I was ashamed that I didn’t know for sure if it was Him or not. Ug. So as I asked the Lord about it, He gave me a song. It just floated up, and I began to think He was answering me, because it didn’t seem like my thought. And that man was a musician. (BTW…I have never told ANYONE about this – not that man, no one.) I had an unction to look up the lyrics to the song, and sure enough, it SEEMED like an answer. I was not sure though. It was a medley of two songs, the last one being “IF”, by BREAD. (If a picture paints a thousand words, then why can’t I paint you…etc…)I just thought that if the Lord was speaking to me in answer to my questions, that I would eventually know for sure – the way the Lord bears witness to His Word. I have heard His voice many times and sometimes know without a doubt it is Him – by that inner, smooth, velvety witness of Holy Spirit.
After the song , I later opened up a social media site. The top post, the first one I saw was from a musician I do not see much of on social media, but it was Phil Driscol. All his post said was, “If a picture paints a thousand words, a song can paint a million.” !!!
I still pray for my ex-husband, even though I have had to leave my house again. I’ve been out again for a year, and I live in a trailer. He sends me away with no money, sometimes no car, and so much more…lol! Might as well laugh.
Oh my goodness…6 years later I’m still marveling, and wondering about the light and the voice and the joy that flooded my soul when i heard the voice and the way I stumbled backwards. Could this have been a lying sign? (Forgive me Lord! I have to be SURE.) Sigh. Any thoughts? Thank you, and God bless you.
natica solari November 25, 2020
How do you describe the indescribable? Your post caught me off guard when you began to describe the experience you had in the physical sense about 5 years ago. When I say off guard, what I really mean is it took my breath away and made me take notice. I too experienced something, that I can only say was a divine intervention or what many call a true miracle. I was not alone when this happened either, my ten year old daughter was in the car with me. We both “went through a process” together that I cannot describe by using our five senses, and was so profound it literally rendered us both speechless about the incident for several hours. What I can confirm with great certainty is this was a good ‘thing’ that happened, I felt complete peace but also a sort of dying feeling too. It also felt as though I got socked in the gut because it took my air away. I remember feeling fear for an instant, slight pain, the sock in my gut, and a mild form of a seizure. But I had an overwhelmingly strong feeling that an angel was with me while I went through this sort of transformation. I didn’t see anything that I can recall due to the flash of bright light that made everything go dark. And then just as soon as I was coming to my senses, my daughter began her journey and I was there to comfort her. I am only giving you the smallest of details, I could go on for days about the feelings that i had and have, the things that I and my daughter now share, feel, see, and know is amazing. I guess what I am trying to say is, you are not alone in your experience… 🙂 In my experience thus far….remain open and teachable, worship only God, and you will be amazed before you know it!
Jennifer Keller December 9, 2020
Bless you , I think it’s a sign for sure . I had a couple of different occasions happen to me . I was in my parents basement sleeping. I had the god give me wings and I flew around while everyone was asleep but I could see everyone sleeping . Then I gone to my Grandmas Apartment building . I have never been to library at all he and I flew to the library and knew everything the way it was pictures on walls the stairs the library everything. Was odd . The next day I ask my Mother what it look like How could this be . God works I think in mysterious ways ..I have so many story’s like this Bless you Jennifer
Jennifer Keller December 9, 2020
My other experience is even more deep . My ex-husband and I were splitting up at the time but we still gone to church . The Preacher had a visitor from a different Church and the man look at me and ask if theirs something I need to ask God . For me to come forward so I did . I didn’t want to but I did . The man placed his hand on my forehead and I passed out apparently. I was in a dark cave with God looking down at me and I looking up at him but the light was bright on his face I could not see it so clear . He said what do you need to tell me that it is ok . I said I’m leaving my husband I cried please forgive me . He said I already knew and I have forgave you . I told God I was sorry . He said it was ok he wanted me happy. God took his hand he placed his hand on my hand raised it to his chest and where his heart was . He said I love you and it’s going to be ok. Then I woke up with people standing over me . I couldn’t never understand what happen and the preacher Talked about the experience that him and I and had he was even taken by surprise with it all. He said that was even hard for him to say . But was blessed I had this experience. I think of this all the time I know I was blessed to have gone threw this . I have not been back to church since this was 10 years ago . Even though it was a Blessed experience it was also a lot on me . I cry talking about it . So I believe that God gives us sign and strength.
Solomon May 2, 2021
You should probably go back to church Jennifer
Dillon Estes November 13, 2020
Through passion and knowledge, I gained the ability to strive my self in the right direction and was blessed enough to be noticed by the great Thoth himself. With concentration, meditation during a Dmt experience. Thoth brought me to meet god face to face. He explained to me that god is a infinite self replicating energy, and at the deepest point god is the only being that really exists, we are all a pieces of god and the ultimate goal of every soul is to help others and yourself return to god. Every thing is energy, energy is light, and light is electro-magnetism. Male-female. Positive-negative. And with the words of god the sound creates form and geometry(altercation of light). God is a being/ energy that can and with be scientifically proven/ and understood with time. The light will always prevail over darkness. God is pure love and love is the force that binds the electric and magnetic field together constantly flowing by the golden spiral within the torus. Never forget your are a part of god and also everything and everyone around you.
Mark Haas October 2, 2020
My God I thank each passing moment, for
pulling me through the pain and torment
that makes me strong, that makes me wise,
that lifts me up to brand new highs.
Without my God, I don’t exist.
But with my God, I still persist in trying
hard to do what’s right, to reach my own
predestined height. My spot in Heaven
that’s there for me was set aside so I could
see that magic dream inside my head.
The one that came to me and said that
“I am His, I’ve always been, that I am
free from hate and sin.”
Troy Louis September 8, 2020
Through your writing, more and more people can learn and understand the Word of God, which has been conveyed by God Himself for the sake of humanity.
laura June 26, 2020
This is the greatest discovery in the Bible to know how much God loves you. He read these on his knees a thousand times. I read it 2 times a day for close to 5 weeks and said them in bed and felt HIS love. this is testing
David Murdoch June 19, 2020
As people become older, they tend to form more and more questions in their minds – “What do I want to do with my life?”, “What are my long-term goals?”, and “Where is my life heading to?” These questions usually come to mind whenever a person is dealing with a life crisis. They can cause a great amount of anxiety, fear, and stress, especially when one is completely clueless about what the future holds for him or her.
Jennifer Anderson July 3, 2019
I would like to share my experiences that I have been able to have with God for the last two and a half years. I have been very sick since I was a baby and am now 38. I was struggling with myself and had given up on living. I prayed to God and since then I have seen several miracles. I was able to get off of my medications that was hindering my mind from being able to have the motivation to feel better. Once I got off my medications and started to feel healthier, I was able to see GOD’S Eye. I never knew that was something that anyone has ever seen and still don’t know if anyone has. It was amazing it was about the size of 2 airplanes in the sky and next to it was an angel. The eye was beautiful. The color of his eye is of the sky with blue and clouds within and it moved around. I am not sure if anyone else saw this at the time. I wish I shared this sooner as some time has passed. I was in Nevada at the time but I live in Sacramento. The angel was moving in and out of the clouds and then went away. His eye moved around just as you would move your own eye. It was the most amazing thing I have ever seen. God has the whole world in his hands. Since then I have seen 2 white doves flying over me as I was reading the bible outside which represents my daughter and myself being safe with God after all we have been through. I have also got to hear his laughter when I learned how to ride a motorcycle. His laughter is the most joyful laughter you could ever imagine hearing and I have been able to hear him laugh once more after that. When I went camping, he also sang to me. I have had a very painful life full of much sadness and have had experiences that have caused me to be crippled with emotional and physical problems. I am able to speak with God and he is helping me to discover just how strong my connection to him is.
Jerry L Martin July 21, 2019
Thank you for sharing, Jennifer. Your experiences are more anthropomorphic than I am personally comfortable with. But, of course, my experience of hearing a divine voice strains the credulity of others. We all have to be grateful for however God comes to us. Bless you!
Jona November 29, 2019
hi. sometimes, i was wondering if i can ever experience that, just like how you experienced it… i feel so empty
Ron Ziegler June 1, 2020
It is June of 2020 so I don’t know if you will see this.
A short version of my story is I was an alcoholic and looked in the mirror and said God help me stop drinking after 35 years of excess HE did
in one night before I believed, went to church, read the Bible, was saved, “born again, repented or was baptized.
The next year I had to deal with losing my wife to Alzheimer’s, and I blamed God.
I ignored God for 15 years and still got signs – you get them too, we all do.
In 2018 I did what a minister said was his breakthrough to God and I cried for 2 hours and felt like a 4 y/o child.
HE said TELL ABOUT MY LOVE.
This is the greatest discovery in the Bible to know how much God loves you. He read these on his knees a thousand times. I read it 2 times a day for close to 5 weeks and said them in bed and felt HIS love. Don’t say them 30-40 times and say that didn’t work because it does. It will come when you least expect it. Say these in first person as if talking to God – you are.
Ephesians 1:16-20 Ephesians 2:4-8 Ephesians 3:14-19.
I wrote a book on Amazon and all royalties go to charity. “SEEK ME and you will find ME, Jer. 29:13, I did and I DID”.
God will bless all who earnestly seek HIM.
Jerry L. Martin June 12, 2020
Jona, the divine appears in many forms and places, and is not always easy to recognize. It can just be in a beautiful spring day or a kindness from a friend, a remark even by a stranger that somehow carries a message for you, a task put in your path that God wants you to attend to, the voice of conscience, and you will find many other examples in God: An Autobiography. It is rare for God to speak, especially at such length as God did with me. I think it was because God wanted to tell the world some things and wanted me to publish what He told me in a book. I have two suggestions. The first works for some people, the second for others. The first is just to sit or meditate, be very still, hearing only your own breath, and let your soul draw in, as if from the surrounding air, the divine presence. Then, be still and sit with God for a goodly period of time. The second is to write your down thoughts — your daily experiences, challenges, pains, and decisions you face — as if you were writing a letter or email to God. And then write down whatever comes to you, as if God were answering. Even if it seems like only your own words, there may be a divine whisper therein.
Rachel Barker June 24, 2019
Faith….From Fluffy to Fierce
It’s so normal to go through life just doing the motions. Right? Set the alarm, get ready for work, pack the kids up and do school drop off, work, dinner, homework, baths, bed…..repeat. Throw the occasional school activity, game and birthday event in, but overall….it all stays the same. It’s so easy to get wrapped up in the “normal” and not think about other people or things.
This WAS totally my life. I went to church (most) Sundays and prayed nightly. Usually, my prayers were thanking the Lord for the day and asking to guide me to be better for the next. I felt bad for other people when they went through things, but that’s where it ended. I didn’t tithe or serve or give selflessly on a consistent basis. I knew horrible, tragic things randomly happened to people. But that was never going to be me. To be honest, the thought never crossed my mind that it could happen.
April 12, 2019 that forever changed. I drove my son to Cooks Children’s’ Hospital in Fort Worth thinking he needed an IV bag and a shot for nausea. I walked into the ER with him and the EMT at the front asked me when his lips had turned purple. My mother-in-law and I just stared at each other. After that, my son was pretty much ripped from my arms and ran into a room where an episode out of ER played out. Twenty medical personnel gowned and masked, asking me a million questions. So it turned out, he was barely alive. The most incomprehensible thing imaginable to me. Official diagnosis…..bacterial and viral pneumonia and sepsis infection in his blood. All caused from Type A Strep & the Rhino Virus (common cold) that was missed by his doctors. He was sent to the ICU where his life expectancy was hour by hour. I can’t explain to you the feeling when a doctor tells you that. I mean, we were at the hospital. Why wasn’t he “fixable”? Let me go ahead and share this….he SURVIVED! It wasn’t easy, but he was placed in a medicated coma. The doctors and nurses worked tirelessly to treat his cardiovascular system, respiratory system and everything else. He woke up on Good Friday. How amazing is that? We were discharged May 1st.
Here’s the good stuff I want to share. As I watched Hunter being worked on in the ICU by 20 plus people, my heart shattered. I immediately prayed but was dissatisfied with the results. Doesn’t God heal instantly? I found myself frustrated and scared. We were surrounded by other parents who prayed with us, Chaplains, family and friends and even strangers. It’s safe to say I was in shock. I text a group of friends begging them to pray for Hunter. The first night in ICU I held his hand and paced and prayed. I think I fell asleep for an hour or so. Sleep was the furthest thing from my mind when my son was fighting for his life. The next day I was given a journal. Initially I thought it was absurd to give me this when I just wanted to stare at my son. (Because surely that would fix him!) The second night I was anxious and stirring so I stared at the journal and thought….why not? I started writing down bible verses that were shared with me. I searched up specifically ones for healing, faith and strength. I attempted to collect my thoughts and get my feelings and thoughts down on paper. As I continued journaling, I was writing down my prayers to be more specific and re-read my thoughts. I focused not only on my son, but those who were helping us. I have social media, and tend to post the “picture perfect” moments. I hesitated putting our horrible situation out there, but I did. The feedback was incredible.
So….when do I get to the part about faith? Well, the entire time we were in ICU, I felt a presence hugging me. My arms had two warm spots where I felt the nonstop hug. Honestly, after 48 hours on only 2 hours of sleep I thought my body was just sore or something. It dawned on me that God was hugging me. A few moments later a friend reached out via email to share her experience of being held by God when her husband had suffered from a stroke. I just knew right then and there that He was with me and wouldn’t leave my side. I clung to that as my fear and anxiety crept in at the worst moments.
I found so much peace in journal and writing down my prayers to God. Joining me in prayer were obviously my friends and family, as well as our entire nation. Our local community as well as strangers from other states shared our posts and sent us messages. Random people visited us at the hospital and prayed. This fierce and consistent praying undoubtedly healed my son. I actually overheard a doctor say “We didn’t do anything special, just our jobs. A higher being did this miracle”.
So why share this? Because I want others to truly feel the change I felt. I want everyone to have a deeper relationship with the Lord. It took a huge drastic moment in my life where I literally had no hope other than in God. When asked how I made it through that time, it was because of my faith. When I found myself on the floor crying, friends, strangers, family would lift me up in prayer and strength. The Lord miraculously saved my son and through that he saved me.
Join me in leaving behind “Fluffy Faith” and indulge yourself in getting to know the Lord better. Study his word. Memorize verses. Pray for others and give selflessly. Fierce Faith will save you in every way possible. I promise you will be forever changed!
Jerry L Martin July 21, 2019
Yours is a moving story, Rachel, full of wisdom for all of us. I am struck that, even in your “normal” life, you prayed just right – first, expressing gratitude and, then, asking for guidance on how to be better. That is what I call God-centered prayer. Emergencies knock the props out from under us and can remind us that we are not in control of our lives. God is the source of the vital energy that animates our lives. Often God does not provide instant healing, or any visible healing, but God is always present and always on our side. Sometimes we vividly feel that presence, as you did in receiving a divine embrace. Quite a lesson in fierce faith! Thank you and bless you!
Kenneth L Miller July 23, 2019
Hello! When I was 15 and heard The Word (Billy Graham and my church) I felt myself being tugged by God to give my life to Christ. I was full of sin and when I accepted Christ I knew a great sense of relief. Just a little while later something truly wonderful happened. Suddenly I was experiencing a sharing of consciousness with God as clearly as talking to someone face-to-face! I experienced an intense and wonderful inner piece that is hard to describe. I saw stars twinkling and could hear them also. I knew this was God. He was giving me a sample of Heaven. It lasted for about 2 days. After that I was on my own with FAITH. God is truly great!
Jerry L Martin August 27, 2019
“After that I was on my own …” That is just right. When we are blessed with profound divinely-given experiences, they are not ends in themselves. They are not the goals of the spiritual life. They are meant to inform, to frame, and to inspire the whole of our lives. Afterwards, we are on our own, but we have a vibrant understanding that we are not alone and that there is an ultimate meaning and destiny for our lives. We let that understanding permeate every experience and every action we take. Bless you!
Phine August 21, 2020
Wow that’s great.
Mine was different story. I’d been in the place of hell where the pain was so severe. Yes, being punished by Satan. Since I’m too stubborn to forgive, God made his way to feel the worst part if I didn’t forgive the people who hurt me. It was my wake up call then. Every night I felt my body was living in the other dimension. Then, I saw jesus standing next to me where the father has been then seated in his throne. His features were all white and blurred that I couldn’t even recognize him fully. Just like in the church, he was in a center place. He was a very big God with the same feature of human. I can’t keep closer to him. We stood near the door of his throne while he spoke to me. His voice was loud and very determine. He didn’t want his people are negative and lack of Happiness in their hearts. Now, I want to serve God if he will guide me. For me, God is true to his words. He talked to me in my dreams just like a friend. I saw a tremendous building in heaven where full of open doors that float in the clouds. Jesus said, you must followed the stray people to come back to me. I don’t know what he mean and why he said that until now. Is God wants me to be his follower? What do you think?
Jerry L Martin September 4, 2020
Yes, God wants to relate to you personally. When images come in dreams – thrones, facial features, etc. – don’t dwell on the images themselves, which can become idols, but on the meaning, which may be embedded as the whole feel of the dreams or visions. This is the task of spiritual discernment, which helps you get centered in your relation to the divine presence. Take the time you need to think this through and relate it, in practical terms, to your life. God: An Autobiography discusses spiritual discernment in the early chapters. I hope that will be helpful to you.
Jerry L. Martin October 21, 2020
These are very strange experiences and difficult to interpret. Not every voice or message in a dream is from God. You have to feel your way toward the truth. But the bottom line is that, yes, surely God wants you to follow divine guidance, as best you can discern it. The task of discernment itself can be a rocky road.
Clark Dave A Limbing October 15, 2020
I’ve been experience on how God touch my heart, it feels like you are too clean and even if you a are a sinner person our God is always our side,he never left us because he create us and love us.without God I am nothing but a sinner person in this sinner world,but with god I live this world peaceful and having a good life I may not be in religious person but my faithful is only MY GOD.
Jerry L. Martin November 2, 2020
I am told in God: An Autobiography that “in a sense, it is only sinners I love.” God loves us, imperfections and all — that is what love is — it takes in the whole person. I am happy that you have found peace and a good life in tandem with God.
Ajit Dass March 29, 2019
God – An Autobiography Review
During my over 25 year spiritual journey I have read a large number of channelled books on life and spirituality.
God – an autobiography is the latest among them and it has given me the widest and deepest knowledge about God and what God is up to with humans on planet earth.
Among many things, it importantly tells us about the role of humans vis-a-vis God and also how God is evolving as humans evolve.
Though the book is an autobiography of God earnestly channelled by Jerry Martin a former professor of philosophy at the University of Colorado at Boulder in USA, through whom God chooses to narrate the amazing experience during the Big Bang and also the revelation of the relationship with God beyond God – the soul of God, to me, this illuminating book has also served as a self-help guide!
From the book I learnt what God would have us do to take forward the goal of the universe referred to as “telos”. I also learnt and applied to my life a cardinal rule that we must be OBEDIENT to God. I inferred that this can be done in various ways –
1. Thinking before every action what God would prefer and the book has made clear that what God prefers is whatever would make you your best self.
2. Not getting attached to material pleasures because this may turn you away from being obedient to God.
3. Allowing yourself to be guided by God by letting go of your mind as often as you can and following the divine light of God like sunflowers following the path of the sun.
4. Taking guidance and acting upon it like two singers in harmony. That is how God would like us to relate.
5. Not going over the deep-end of spirituality thereby serving the purpose of life and action on earth.
My understandings of the book certainly led to greater harmony within and outside of me.
Another great part of the book is that you get a synopsis of many different philosophies of the world at one place from none other than the author of these philosophies – God! The Chinese philosophies of Confucius, Tao and I-Ching, Zoroastrianism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism and Christianity to name a few are all condensed here brilliantly. This has been done for us to realise that all these philosophies are chapters in one big continuing story of mankind.
If you have even the slightest interest in spirituality, this is a book that you may end up reading more than once and there will be newness to it every time you read it.
Jerry L. Martin March 31, 2019
Thank you for these penetrating comments, Ajit. It is wonderful how you are able to draw five implications for how we live our lives from the book. These insights will be helpful to other readers. Bless you!
Caitlin June 22, 2019
I really want to share my experience with a stranger who I believe was God. I I started doubting my faith when I began searching for things that helped me learn more about myself. Like astrology and numerology and I had a big passion in learning new things very open minded into all perspectives of creation. I knew I believed in God, but I didn’t really know what part I was believing I didn’t believe the story of Jesus . being raised Catholic I was brought up to always believing and not sin. But then when I started losing faith in myself finding myself getting so wrapped up in science. I felt guilty because I knew this isn’t the way I bet if there was God why would I be learning to doubt. That is when I started believing in the devil more than anything and spirits and I was looking at a numerology and science studies and metaphysics. I was searching for answers. Trying to find myself I’m very into numerology and very into learning about the universe but then I met someone who instantly I could just feel a good vibe of good energy. She was asking me what do I believe and what I don’t. And if Ive read the Bible. Which I hadn’t She told me the prescense of God was all around us. I told her the devil’s was too. And she began reading scripture out if memory I don’t remember exactly what. But began praying as well. She asked me to say Jesus and for some reason I couldn’t say it with a confidence I was scared she was asking why I couldn’t say Jesus. I was saying yes out of fear. She began getting to know me helping me feel comfortable I was really started to put an end to my wondering and ready to learn about Jesus. She started asking if I was abused as a child or if something traumatic happened to me or if I had studied witchcraft or native American rituals. I explained how I recently learned witchcraft the flame from candles trying to see signs of just anything. I’ve tried to call upon angels and deceased loved ones. not believing it could bring any harm. For some reason I trusted that she could help figure out why it was what it was I was searching for and she began to explain then that wasn’t me the person I was it wasn’t loving of myself and accepting of myself wasn’t me wasn’t God. She spoke from the Bible explaining answers to where my doubt came from she start praying for protection and to God. She asked me if any names sounded familiar. She names off a few weird names I never heard but one made me look behind me and I started getting antsy. I could not leave where I was at in the state I was in. I broke down crying to her telling her I didn’t feel like myself I just was lost. I felt a strong sense of death I was worried for my son I had feelings I was going to die soon. Random feelings took over me. I knew I was going to die. I was told there was going to be a funeral today. I told her I was ready to get myself Texas espressos rays of September as I say they’re into my heart I really wanted my feedback I was ready to become the person I was created to be. She said what is happening right now that I did myself 2 paise no longer serve any purpose not good for me. I forget a lot of what was said but basically the word she spoke was like God it all I felt was the presence of God put her hand over my head casted all that all evil of jealousy and fear and anger and doubt and hate angry and guilt and regret tested all those feelings to the pits of hell. I was not scared at all a child filigree transformation happening the lights got brighter I felt like I was floating I literally might sound crazy right now but what I went through experience that I went through change my life forever. I don’t know what’s it’s called an exorcism or if it’s being baptized by the holy Spirit life is very store my friends have been forgiven my heart has been purified I’m now working on trying to help heal others. PURE TRUTH was shown to me God was given to me through Jesus God entered my soul my thanks we’re to Jesus and I was blessed and Saved and want to share this story because what I went through feels like how the Bible explains Jesus and his miracles and God saved my life.
Jerry L Martin July 21, 2019
Not all spiritual forces are benign. As I report in God: An Autobiography, I was told in prayer that some forces are sinister, even demonic. They can flood into us In moments of weakness, or of guilt, or of delving into dark matters. Sometimes God speaks us, not directly in words or inner feelings, but through what another person says to us. We need to be pay attention when God uses others to send us a message. You may well have received something like an exorcism. I pray that whatever destructive force was present is now gone forever!
Ajit Dass March 20, 2019
Experience with God
I discovered a place in the year 2000 which is 5 hours away from my hometown in India called Kushinagar that is spiritually charged.
Kushinagar has the distinction of being the place where Gautama Buddha attained Nirvana upon his death. The followers of Buddhism, especially from Asian countries, wish to visit this place at least once in their lifetime. Why is that so?
From my experience I can tell you that as soon as you enter this city your body starts to de-stress like one feels when slipping into meditation.
After an overnight sleep, as I woke up at my hotel which was in the line of sight of the main temple I was as refreshed as I would have been had I meditated the whole night.
I took a round of the main temple in the morning and was drawn towards a brick platform from where Buddha used to give sermons. To my surprise I found a greenish aura on the surface of this platform visible to the naked eye. This was indeed miraculous and the feeling while you sat in its vicinity was blissful.
I returned to this place 6 years later and surrendered to this spiritual energy from my heart. To my surprise, I immediately felt a tickle in my heart and a warmth enveloped my whole being – the kind one feels when your mother hugs you with love.
This feeling remained with me for 3 months and I would feel so complete with this blissful state that I didn’t want to meet anyone nor do any work.
I realised I was losing balance and going over the deep end of spirituality! So I pulled myself together and resumed my work.
Recently I read a quote of Buddha in Kushinagar that implied that we must find salvation in this life before the inevitable perishing of your body. I wondered what does anyone mean by “salvation”?
The answer came to me immediately. Salvation in this life is when one can remain “light” in every situation. If you are divinely charged and lightened you are enlightened!!!
There are many ways in which you can lighten your body and lighten your mind. Yoga, meditation, selfless service, friendships, music and dance are a few of them which have been tried and tested by me.
Jerry L. Martin March 25, 2019
These are wonderful experiences! One can enter a state of spiritual bliss or contentment or even rapture. These are valuable ways to connect with the divine. But, as you say, you can also lose balance and go over the deep end! What I am told in the God book is that these are valuable experiences for drawing energy from the divine but having these experiences is not the be-all and end-all. Life is about the living of it, and we should live and act in partnership and harmony with God. According to what I was told in prayer, the goal of life, one term for which is “salvation,” is achieved whenever we turn our souls upward, toward the divine. It sounds as if what you call lightness is one way to do that and, as you point out, it can be actualized in a number of different ways. Each of us has to find the ways that best connect us to the divine (by whatever name seems right to us). By sharing you experience, Ajit, you have also given us an excellent teaching!
Anne February 22, 2019
I am 18 years old and I grew up as a Presbyterian Christian. I went to church every Sunday as a child with my siblings and my mother. Though I went to Church, I felt it was just something people did and there was nothing else to it. I did not really understand it, so I lived most of my life not understanding who God really was. Growing up, my home started becoming broken. I went from having this energetic, crazy, incredible personality to becoming this empty, unfulfilled, and unhappy child who thought “This is just what getting older is like.” But I now realize it is the opposite. I had been diagnosed with clinical depression and anxiety at the age of 12 and I never thought anything of it. I had very few friends, no hobbies, and no desire to do practically anything. Though I didn’t understand God, I was still involved with my Church’s youth group. We all went to this weekend ‘summit’ for young Christians in our area. I went with one of my best friends and we went because of the activities that were offered there (ice skating, hiking, rock climbing), I had no interest in the worship part of the trip. But at one point during these times of worship (they had a band and a speaker come) the speaker decided to “invite” the Holy Spirit into the room. I had no idea what that meant but I just went with it. The band started playing a song with the lyrics “Holy Spirit you are welcome here, come flood this place and fill the atmosphere.” – “Let us become more aware of your presence.” When I heard these lyrics, something happened. I was immediately filled with this powerful warmth and pressure in my chest, and I started bawling crying. I had no idea what was going on (there were others who had the same thing happen to them at the same time as me). There was a woman who came over to me and she automatically knew what was happening to me and she put her hand on my shoulder and said, “Thank you, Lord Jesus, for her.” The Holy Spirit filled me and I had intense feeling of peace and absolute joy. This was my awakening to God.
Years passed and I had kept my relationship with God, but over time it seemed to have been incredibly distant. I stopped thinking about Him for a while. The past two years, I completely, and unknowingly, separated myself from God. It was possibly the worst two years of my life. I am in my Senior Year of high school now and I had another awakening. This winter has been especially hard for me academically, socially, and mentally. I was back to feeling incredibly empty and just sad, I didn’t want to continue living thinking that it was going to be this way all the time.
About three days ago, I was on a bus going to my school’s ski team practice and I decided to listen to some worship songs I used to listen to a couple years ago. The song that I pressed (not to mention by accident) was the song that the band had played that significant night. I started to feel that warm feeling in my chest again. It was a really cloudy day and I was just looking out of the window enjoying the song. We then took a turn onto this road on a hillside and I saw the sun peaking through the clouds with sun rays beaming all across the mountain, and in that cloud, I saw a shape of a man’s face. I had this overwhelming sensation run through my ENTIRE body and it felt like I was floating. My chest became so warm and I was so overjoyed that my toes were tingling. That very second I knew that the face I saw was Him. Since then, all I could think about was Him. I am now able to hear Him in my own thoughts and I can feel in my chest whether something is right or not. I physically feel him with me all the time.
Jerry, what do you think God is telling me by making me physically feel him constantly now?
Jerry L. Martin March 6, 2019
It sounds to me as if God is reminding you of the divine presence. God is with us whether or not we are aware of it. Sometimes we have to open our hearts. Sometimes, as in your first case, the divine spirit just comes in without an invitation. Our lives have many ups and downs. It is difficult, but then most important, to be aware during the dismal times that God is with us, loves us, and is available to guide us. You are receiving direct guidance and here a further challenge comes in — the challenge of spiritual discernment. It takes careful attention to recognize and correct interpret the divine signals. It sounds as if you are doing a good job of that. Bless you!
Raymond February 7, 2019
I just have to relate this to someone and this seems as good a place as any. I was baptized as an adult & honestly have fallen away from faith the older I get. I was just this morning alone in my office listening to the song “People are Crazy” by Billy Currington (not a particularly faith-filled song if you know it). A line in the song says something about sitting in a bar talking about Gods Grace. Within 5 seconds of hearing those words, I was absolutely struck by sadness, fear, confusion, and a massive burden in my heart. I started crying which I very seldom do and could not figure out what was happening. Within 30 or 40 seconds I instinctively fell to my knees in my office sobbing and begging for forgiveness.
I kneeled there for probably 5 minutes before trying to get up in case someone came in. I couldn’t. .. it felt like I was glued to the floor. It was only after I knelt there and properly and consciously asked God for forgiveness in Jesus name did I hear (more like felt) a quiet voice telling me “get up.” Honestly, I resisted it at first, but it kept saying “get up”. So here I am relating this. WOW! I’m a bit blown away!
Jerry L. Martin February 17, 2019
This is good news, Raymond. There was, as you put it, a massive burden in your heart. It is a deeply spiritual, grace-filled moment when you feel the sadness, fear, and confusion caused by that burden. It is indeed a moment for falling to your feet and pouring out your heart to God. That opened your heart to hearing, or feeling, the divine voice. Of course, you are blown away. Your story blows me away. But take the time to ponder the meaning of “get up.” There may be a deeper message there. Bless you for sharing!
Jacob Slaven December 14, 2018
I am 14 years old, and I live in a small town. Every night, I would go outside in my backyard to get away from the struggles of life, and just observe the vast universe God has created. On one occasion, I couldn’t go outside, because I had a bunch of homework I had to do, and I got ready for bed like I would normally do. As I turned out the lights, and laid in bed for about 15-20 minutes, I felt a powerful feeling throughout my body — I could tell it wasn’t my conscience, because it was 10 times that feeling. Just to mention, it was Monday, and I remember seeing two of my friends that I couldn’t get off my mind until the next day. Back to when I was laying down, I felt like somebody was grabbing my insides and trying to turn them to the outside — I know it’s kind of weird. My head began to ache, and almost immediately after this, I heard somebody whispered, “Something bad happened.” No one was in my room at that time, and it was about 9:00 at night.
That week, one of the two friends I had mentioned, his grandmother past away. The other friend, I asked him, “Are you ok?” He looked at me oddly, just like anyone else would, and replied, “Yes, I’m doing ok”. That same week, the friend I was just talking to yesterday came home to find his dog was dead in the pastures. The next night, I went outside and conversed with God once again, but I cried, because I knew he had been with me all this time, and I realized, that feeling was to open up, or go talk to those people and comfort them. I am still confused though, whether it was my fault that I didn’t tell my friends about right then and there. What does this mean? Is this a mad coincidence? The factors of life?
Jerry L. Martin January 1, 2019
Jacob, it was NOT your fault. God put you in a situation where you couldn’t warn your friend in advance — you didn’t know what to warn him about. God put you in a situation where you could console your friends — in those moments, we are vehicles of God’s love. He also gave you confirmation that He is real and cares about your life and the lives of others. These events could be just coincidences, but you learn more by taking them seriously than by discounting them. You may have further moments God comes to you or you may not. It doesn’t matter. God has already let you know that He is present and caring. Cherish that knowledge for the rest of your life! Bless you!
Lara November 29, 2018
My first conscious experience with God was a couple days after Easter this year. I call it conscious experience because it was my first time seeing and experiencing God in a way I never had before. I want to share a series of them that converted me from a non-believer to a Christian.
I had used to go to church as a teenager in early 2000s with friends but did not really catch on what it meant to know God and be a Christian. So while I was a proclaimed Christian back in my teenage years, I can’t say I knew what I was doing or what I stood up for, it felt more like a social experience to me. So expectedly and tryingly, I faded away from Christianity a year or so later, still a teenager. This year, after a friend invited me to Easter church, floodgates of church experiences from the past came back to me and I started questioning the faith very critically, such as what are women’s place in Christianity? The sermons are ridiculous! Why are they dramatizing the death of Jesus? I was just full of resentment and critique after the service. At the same time, my mind could not get off the thought of what the church was all about. In a way I felt tormented over a week or so and that was so weird when I was supposed to be studying for my exams. Then came one day when I was just completely frustrated, the friend who churched me during Easter consoled me and gave me some wise words. Inexplicably, I felt a sudden peace and calmness in my mind and a sort of looking contently from above sort of calm all around me, that my problems I saw suddenly seemed so small and insignificant. And my friend said he was surprised to have said those things to me for he did not think he could say those words, when I thanked him for his kindness. That was a bit surreal and I did not feel frustration for the next few months (very rare). I did not realise it then and thought to myself in retrospection two weeks later that was God coming close to me and healing my wounded self.
Soon I decided to buy a bible as my teenager bible had gone missing and I felt I had to read the bible. When I did get started (it is not my first time reading a bible though I was not too familiar with the content), I had no idea why, deep sorrow overwhelmed me and tears streamed down my face so excessively I was sobbing. For the record, I was just reading the book of John where Jesus had an interaction with the woman by the well. So inexplicable that I decided the only next reasonable step is I must put my faith in God. Since then it had been about a month plus after Easter, I had been having very strange experiences that just told me God is with me. I went to church on my own and prayed on my own and lamented to God why this Christian path is a little lonely, and at that exact moment, some show screening on TV showed a couple of people praying together and going Amen at the moment I went Amen. How coincidental is that?
Then in a prayer while reading one of the gospels about two months after Easter, it just came flooding onto me that though I was a ‘fake’ Christian in my teenage years, God had been by my side all this while. In my bestest attempts to be godly, that I perceived as shit fake, God had not given up on me. After I left church in my teenage years, many good things started to happen to me I would say it was the awakening of my life. I got to achieve a few of my life goals and become more independent, got opportunities to work, travel and study and play and be in love. But I had never credited all these to God because I had not known or I gave up trying to know God. But after my Easter church this year and the strange spiritual experiences I had, this epiphany just rolled onto me and i could not help but cry and praise God for all that He had done for me and not leaving me even when I left Him. I could just suddenly understand that all that I was enjoying was from the love and grace of God, which strangely a few moments ago, this thought was inconceivable and the experience therefore, unconscious. Another overwhelming tearing experience followed while I shook in gratitude for God. I knew I was reborn again, this time in Christ for sure.
Jerry L. Martin December 6, 2018
Lara, there are many lessons in your wonderful report. You came to see that God was with you all along. Somehow, as often happens, it was just when you were “full of resentment and critique” to the point of feeling “tormented,” that a friend said words to you that were more full of wisdom than that friend could imagine having. God sometimes speaks to us through opens, and does so at times of greatest. Sometimes our moments of angry protest are our most sincere moments with God, and they can help to open our souls and enable us to hear words of wisdom from a friend and to let in the “sudden peace and calmness” that a relationship with the divine brings. Notice that the specific issues that had made up your “resentment and critique” ended up being somewhat beside the point when you actually came into faith. You have replaced resentment with gratitude, which is not only healthier but also more realistic. Every gift that comes into our lives has God’s signature on it. Bless you!
Alex November 28, 2018
I will write this for a large majority of people in the modern world – but I certainly don’t claim to be someone who represents everyone in this way.
My experience of God is the silence. The complete silence of … Nothing. Pray and listen for hours. What is heard?
Pray in the morning, seeking guidance. What is heard?
Buy the book, “God: An Autobiography”. Read it intensely and study it. Pray more. Try to conform and listen to the Divine. Spend months doing this.
What is heard?
I know that most people see God as a rescue helicopter, Jerry, but some of us don’t, and we are rewarded with a deafening silence when we seek guidance. When guidance is sought and nothing is heard in return, eventually even the most patient will give up the ghost. That is what I did – what I have done – and it is what a growing number of people are doing.
What is my experience of God – what is the common man’s experience of him…?
To ask is to get no answer, because there is none. My experience – and many others – attests to complete bewilderment at what to do, where to go, or whom to get guidance from. After hearing literally nothing – after feeling no “pull” in any direction – one begins to (correctly) feel like a moron for bothering.
So my experience, Professor Martin, is one of complete silence.
What happens when a culture experiences what I experienced? Look around you – this is what happens. He has no one to blame but himself. Perhaps he thinks he can continue to hide from people, and communicate through people such as yourself. But the meager sales of your book (I hope I am not being too brutal here) and the current climate of disbelief is the result of such an approach.
Is there a Good? Who knows? Judging from my experience, there is not one way of saying yes or no, but most (including me) will say that a God who does not even give guidance when called upon is not worthy of my worship – or anyone else’s, really.
He wants people to listen to him? No he doesn’t Professor Martin. If he did he might actually say something.
Jerry L. Martin December 6, 2018
This is an extremely important post, Alex. There is a relentless logic to it, all the way to reflections on the culture, on whether there is a God, or whether, if there is, such an unresponsive God is worth worshipping. Those are topics that could fill a seminar. But I would like to focus on you, Alex, and your personal experience. I am struck that you are doing the right thing – not praying for a rescue helicopter but praying for guidance. What does God want Alex to do in this life, or just in this day? And after praying intently and repeatedly, and studying assiduously, you get Nothing, not even a “pull” in one direction or another.
I assume that you have also looked for divine messages in tasks placed in your path, in comments from friends, in sacred ceremonies, in natural beauty, in divine proximity at moments of great change such as marriage or death, in the sorts of meaningful coincidences that Carl Jung called synchronicity. I assume you find tasks in your path, but no sign that God has placed them there or that you are supposed to pick up one task rather than others. You don’t connect the dots because you see no dots to connect and, if you do, you have no divine clue as to how to connect them.
Although God seems not to have spoken or otherwise manifested divine presence to you, God has done that for others, and the results are recorded, among other places, in the sacred texts of the various traditions and in the exemplary lives of iconic figures in those traditions. You might just try living according to the Ten Commandments, the teachings of Jesus, the guidance in the Bhagavad Gita, and so on – whichever ones seem most relevant to your life.
But I feel there is something deeper here, Alex. You just get Nothing. Is there a way you can probe the divine silence, get to the bottom of it, as it were. Take your whole heart, mind, and soul into the depths of the Nothing and see what you find there. Don’t decide in advance what will count as an answer or insight, but just see what you find there in the depths. God’s silence may be a way of drawing you forward into something you have not anticipated, I don’t know.
You may not hear from God, but I have the sense that your soul is attuned to the divine pull. Your earnest efforts, and honest assessment of the empty outcome, is evidence of that. You may be right now on the path God intends for you. In your search for truth, you are already partnering with God.
Alex December 23, 2018
Dr. Martin, thank you for the reply.
I have to confess that your reply deeply moved me – I did not expect you to publish it.
As I thought about my reply, I instantly had too much to say. So instead I will say that I apologize for being so harsh – to both you and to Him. Secondly I would say that I would love to do the most I can to spread your message – His message.
You really are his New Elijah. Forgive me for my brashness; I tell this to you as much as I tell it to Him.
You are in my prayers, as is the success of this stupendous book.
Jerry L. Martin January 1, 2019
Alex, I would like to continue this discussion with you. I will send you an email if we have your address. Just in case, you can email me at the address listed on the website. Our spiritual lives are precarious and take courage. I look forward to further contact with you. Meanwhile, be well! Jerry
Alex January 5, 2019
Professor Martin, I would love to discuss things with you over email. It seems as though I cannot email you through the website, however; the addresses that are on the website are to publishers and salesmen. You are of course free to use my email address.
Jesse December 12, 2018
I was 13. I had prayed every night that the Lord would save my soul. I was raised in an old Baptist country Church and had prayed this prayer every night from my youth up routinely. That night was no different as I started to say my prayer ,as soon as the word soul came out of my mouth , the Lord God Almighty who hung the moon and stars overshadowed me whith his Spirit. It was the most fear I have ever felt in my life. I did not have to go to my mother or father. I knew who it was. He did not save me that night but condemned me. I new that night I was lost and if I died would lift my eyes in hell. I remember going to the bathroom and staring at myself in the mirror knowing something had changed while my heart was pounding out of my chest. The feeling that had hit me I cannot describe other than a fire I had never experienced and a rushing of every nerve on my body . I new I was in trouble but did not exactly no what to do. All I kept seeing was getting back to my church. That Sunday I was brought to my church as always. I Was nervous and could not get comfortable, at the end of the service when the preacher opened the Church for membership by letter or experience of Grace .The church begain to sing and the Lord returned onto me and I took one step towards the ile to join the Church and in that first step the Lord saved my never dying soul. I do not even remember walking to the front of the church into the pastor’s arms. I had the greatest peace I have ever felt . I thought surely I would never have another problem in this world . I was babtised the next weekend. I am 34 now. I have surely had many troubles since then in this world but have never had that fear and trembling I felt that night. The Lord has blessed me to feel him many times after. Not in an audible voice but with his voice Wich speaks to the soul . When I pray in Ernest and groanings of my heart he let’s me know he has heard me. He appeared onto me when I was 13. There is no certain age. But he said he would appear on to all men. Your time will come and may be soon. He said that no one can come onto him unless he draws them. When he draws on your soul u will know. I have also heard of people being saved on their death bed. But I would not recommend that. God bless u to feel what i have.
Quintin Thomas October 6, 2018
My experience happened a couple hours ago, I’m still shaking.. I was at a party and there was some abuse going on between two of my friends, I tried to stop it but it didn’t work. I go outside and wait outside to make sure everything okay, I hear a bang and go investigate just to be told by the guy’s father to leave. As I’m leaving I see a guy walking down the sidewalk, this is around 2-2:30 am keep in mind. I was gonna ask him if I could use his phone cause mine died, I decided not to but then I felt the urge to do it… I ask him if he has a phone I could use, he first response was “why?”, I tell him so I can call my mom, and instead of saying yes or no he starts talking to me about why I’m upset and need to call her. Fast forward 30 or so minutes, this guy I just met has managed to make me feel comfortable enough to tell him about some of my problems.. .Keep in mind I don’t even like talking to therapists yet this guy I just met was able to get me to talk about my problems and open up. Before we go separate ways he recommends a song called “Camoflauge” by Stan Ridgway. As I’m reading the lyrics I realized just how much they related to how I just felt and how he was so kind to me. . . He then vanished. I’ve lived in this neighborhood for 10+ years and have never seen him in my life… I’ve never been so emotional over a song in my life!
Jerry L. Martin December 1, 2018
A remarkable experience! God communicates with us in many ways. Sometimes it is in something a friend — or, in this case, a stranger — says. Sometimes it is like being visited by an angel. These are moments to take in fully, and let them radiate over our lives, and be thankful for.
Gina October 5, 2018
I’ve had multiple experiences with God. Two experiences that are so amazing that words can’t do them justice. I am 35 years old and I grew up in a atheist household. I asked God to be part of my life when I was nine years old. I didn’t have the best upbringing and I was alone. God hasn’t let me down since.
I’m going to start with the experience I had yesterday.. my husband and I had an argument which we never argue or fight. I was crying so hard sitting on the sofa I remember saying I feel so alone and have no one to talk to. Than I heard a voice it said “your not alone you have God”. The voice was so loud and clear it made me jump up. I was still crying and looking down. I know this sounds like it can’t be real but it really happened and I have to tell someone. The voice told me to look outside.. mind you right now it’s October in NY and it’s dark until about 8 in the morning, this was around 6:45-7 in the morning. So I looked outside and I remember it being dark outside because I had let the dog out. I looked out the back window and the sky was lit up a yellow bright almost lime green light! It was so bright like glowing! Something said go outside experience this. I looked at my deck and the wood looked dry it was so bright their was no water on the deck. I sat in the patio chair… the air, clouds everything was glowing yellow… the bumblebee bees were in slow motion while I was watching them I felt how beautiful they were. I looked up and their was a double half rainbow it seemed in perfect position. I knew I was in God’s presence. I thought about getting up to get my phone and take a picture but I heard God and he told me not to move, he said experience this for it will only last a minute! I stayed I felt him all around around me he was with me. The sky went back to normal I walked back to the house it fell dark and my deck was soaking wet. That just happened yesterday.
So my other experience was four years ago I gave birth to my son whom was born with a very rare heart disease.. he had his first open heart surgery at 14 days old. After his surgery he was in ICU for three months. Their was a baby across from us that was born the day before him. My son and her son had the same middle name and a very similar first name pretty much the same birthday and our boys were both very sick. So both babies caught Ecoli in the hospital.. it was horrific. The head Cardiologist came to me at my baby’s bedside and told me to make arrangements because it doesn’t look good and she’s sorry, that she wishes it was another way. I remember being angry that I was alone when given the news. I was devastated … I left the baby at the hospital to go pick up my other son from school. I was in the car waiting for him to come out and I heard a voice.. it said and I’m not even making this up.. it said get your shit together and pray like you’ve never prayed before. I still remember that prayer I can still feel it when I think about it.. I told God I don’t want my son to live but I need him to live , I explained to him why.. why I needed this prayer answered I prayed with my soul I felt every ounce of my pain and soul radiating out of me.. I was sitting in the seat of the car but felt as if I was on my knees I felt sweat goosebumps and energy coming out of me while I begged for Gods mercy, I made promises to God to let him guide my path. That was the only day I ever prayed like that. It was unexplainable but I was begging with more emotions than I knew I even had. I felt like time stopped I didn’t hear the cars going by or didn’t care who saw me crying and praying I had no shame. The next day the doctors said all my son’s fluids came off and he did a complete turn around that he can leave the ICU. They were shocked! I knew God did that adn he worked all night on my son! The other baby died .. .I feel guilty for that, I don’t have a reason I will have to live with that for the rest of my life. My son is doing well and has had other open heart surgeries. I hope he grows to do God’s work and help them plant. Thank you for reading my experiences I hope they help you in some way. I now just say God plan smy path and guide me. I don’t try and make things happen I just trust that he will push me where I need to go, I hope that helps.
Jerry L. Martin December 1, 2018
Your remarkable experiences are full of spiritual lessons. The fact that you turned to God when you were only nine years ago shows an openness of soul. God tells you, “you are not alone” — that is the most important lesson of all. If we turn our hearts toward the divine (and sometimes even if we don’t), God is there for us. You then experienced God’s radiant presence. You were told not to move. The divine presence is not there to be documented but for you to take in, and let the moment be sufficient unto itself. You need to remember that moment and let it inform the rest of your life.
One of the mysteries of life is suffering. It never quite makes sense when a child is lethally afflicted. It comes out of the blue with no rhyme or reason. You were angry that you were alone when given the news — but, in fact, you were not alone. None of us is ever really alone. When you received the guidance to pray, you did it. You did it with all your heart. God does not always grant what we pray for (though He always listens with love), but you did what God asked and this time he did save your son. You rightly hope that your son grows to do God’s work, and you rightly commit yourself let God plan your path. Living in partnership with God is an adventure.
Shaquoiah September 11, 2018
My first experience with God was an unexpected one. You see growing up I knew who God was but wasn’t properly brought up being Christian. My family were the kind of Christians that believed he was some what real but didn’t follow through with going to church, praying everyday etc. My questioning of God really came when I was in high school. I went to a Christian private school but didn’t really believe what they were teaching as there were always questions of science. So one day I decided to pray to God.. I didn’t think he would listen but I gave it a shot anyways. On Thursdays we usually have chapel time therefore I figured it was the perfect opportunity. So as my Reverend spoke about Jesus I instead prayed in my head. It went along the lines of “God.. or Jesus whoever is listening can you prove your existence?” I didn’t really know what I was saying but stuck with it. After that I somewhat forgot about it throughout the rest of the week. Until the coming Saturday my experience reminded me. On this day I had gone out with my friend and brother to the city for the day. After a long day we decided to call a cab and head home. Just before we called a cab this man walks up to us. He looks at me and the others and says to each “Do you believe in God” our answered were sorta like yeah but not really. He then smiled and said thats okay and looked at me and said “Have you opened your heart to God yet?” I was kind of put on the spot so I just said no. He then smiled again, asked for my name before he offered to pray for me. I said yes so he said a little prayer for me before giving us each a small book of The Gospel of Mark. Till this day I still have the book as it reminds me of my small experience with God.
Jerry L Martin September 24, 2018
What is great about your comment is that it illustrates something important about our relationship with God. Divine communications are not always dramatic or vivid or explicit. They can even come by way of what someone else says to you. The important thing is how you take it in, recognizing the divine message and taking it into your life. It was, in fact, an answer to your prayer. Bless you!
Eden August 6, 2018
I believe I’ve had a few experiences involving words of guidance, warnings, or even just a feeling that he was there. I didn’t exactly grow up in the Christian home where we were active in the church or community. I was taught very little about the Bible or God, so I did not have much knowledge on Christianity as a whole. However, I started to know God mainly through his presence at first. I would feel him throughout random times in my life, even the times when I was younger. I felt him calling out to me, wanting me to talk to him and to develop a relationship with him. The words were hard to hear then, and I could convince myself to think about something else. I wanted to think about something else because I didn’t want to face the reality that I hadn’t sought him out, that I hadn’t fully given myself to him. I did not hear him a lot of times, but each time I remember knowing with certainty it was God who was speaking.
At a particularly low point in my life, I tried to convince myself that all of those times I did experience his presence weren’t real. I wanted to believe that he didn’t exist because I thought it would have been easier than believing he did exist with everything bad that happened in the world. One day, I asked God to prove to me that he did exist. It was then that I felt a calling to go outside. I sat down on the grass, and I just waited for him. I was listening to music at the time, and a random song came on that I had only heard once before but never really listened to. The title of the song happened to be my name. The song was about starting over and being saved. At that moment, I felt God. This time was different than the last few times. His presence then was very powerful. I’m not sure how other people feel God, but for me, it started at the center and radiated throughout my body. I felt his presence not only inside me but apart of the world around me. I saw him and his love in everything. It was a beautiful reminder that he was with me and had always wanted to be.
Since then, I have felt him in other ways too, such as a comforting presence and a reminder that he’s with me whenever I am stressed. He has spoken to me and given me warnings about involving myself with certain people or just some people in general who have bad intentions. He’s given me warnings about my actions too, like reminding me what I should or should not do in certain situations. As I have started to study the Bible more, I have learned more about Christianity. In doing so, it has made me more at peace. It’s also made me consider working in a church so that I can help others experience God in a similar way, and I’m going to major in Christian Studies once I transfer to another college. I’m starting to understand the ways in which God works is not always clear to us. However, there are many ways that he speaks to us and makes his presence known. It is up to us to try to further develop a relationship with God so that we may recognize when he is speaking.
Jerry L Martin August 27, 2018
God is making Himself very available to you, and you are doing a wonderful job of being open and ready to respond. One key to the spiritual life is simply to have an open soul. You let God in and you trust His presence in whatever ways it shows itself. That it itself a lot of what God wants of us. Please keep me posted on the course of your spiritual life. Bless you!
Marguerite Okaingni September 25, 2018
How can I know the Holy spirit more? Because He is my precious and I want to know Him more. I face some challenges and I feel like He is away from me….I asked of experiencing something stronger with him but I had no response perhaps because I didn’t see it? Still wondering plssssss I need help just tell me the ways to meet Him for I wanna be in His presence everyday.
Ev-a(Eva) August 3, 2018
As A teenager I had a desire to know God, I called it the “Unknown.” I grew up during the Jean Dixon era (Psychic), and thought this was how I could know God, but found out quickly, NO, this was not the way. I had a desire to help people, not knowing the Five-fold Ministry. I did accept Jesus Christ as my LORD and Savior, and my mind was totally renewed. I eventually joined a “Pentecostal” Church, at this time, and learned more about God. This Church had a Bible College. I went to an orientation with a mind to enroll, but during the orientation, I thought I was not intelligent enough to attend. But a year later I enrolled, I learned the History of the Bible, Old Testament History, NewTestament History. etc, Greek , every Course in Biblical Studies. While a member and a student in Bible College< I would have experiences that I did not understand. It felt like a heaviness/burden, that I did not understand, and the only thing I knew to do was pray, pray for family, friends, the church, the nations. (It was never a fearfu,l or "spooky" experience). I would weep because I felt something was happening, not knowing what to pray for. During Bible Class I stood up and explained to classmates the heavy burden I was experiencing, and while praying to God, I asked God to take it from me… It was too heavy for me." I just did not understand what was happening. A seasoned Christian woman of God, stood up and said, "don't ask God to take this from you, God is calling you as an "Intercessor," to stand in the gap for others." Never heard the word Intercessor before. From that time to now ; 30 years now I daily interceed for other, nations, relatives; etc. I never took classes that intercession, God has been my teacher. Since that time I have heard some say, Intercessory is a gift. and some say it's taught(?) Holy Spirit teaches us how to pray. All I know. I never went to class , I had an experience with God and I learned God's call, as I continued to obey. I pray I am explaining this post whereby you understand my experience with God. Intercession( standing in the gap) for others, nations, families, regions territories, third world countries, government, etc…….can be a heavy experience, and a daily "call." Respectfully, Ev'a (Eva).
Jerry L Martin August 27, 2018
I learned something from you remarkable experience, Eva. I had never heard of an Intercessor. It sounds like both a burden and a gift — some of God’s gifts are also burdens, and some of one’s burdens are also God’s gifts. We all have a daily call, but for some it is not noticed, since it is to be a good mother or husband or neighbor. It is important to recognize one’s call and to accept it. Bless you!
Ev'a (Eva) September 7, 2018
Hello Jerry Martin, Thanks for your reply. I was just browsing, and came upon your page, the comments and questions. Regarding the word Intercession/intercessor I do hope you searched the scriptures on intercession/interceed. “Jesus sits on the right hand of the Father interceding for us.”
~ Romans 8:34 ~ also, First Tim 2:1, Isaiah 64-65 Isaiah’s Intercession for the people, and more…..
Jerry L Martin September 24, 2018
Thank you for the reference, but in God: An Autobiography, I am told that we can relate to God directly as well as through Jesus. That way God can also relate to those of other traditions or of no religious affiliation. Still, your experience was a divine blessing!
Kalle Antero July 29, 2018
I’m 23 years old male. I never had a connection with god when i was young. My parents did not believe nor they had any experienced with God. I alienated from happiness and love when i was around teenage. I felt a lot of rejection from every direction possible. I had troubles with law and with mental health, in a sense i had problems with life itself; and I thought life had problems with me. When i got older I got involved with more unhappiness in form of violence, drugs and a criminal way of life. You know the feeling, when you are surrounded by fog. You can’t see straight and you feel there is nothing left in the world but that fog. I had that feeling except it was in my head, all the time. I even thought about suicide. When i was at my lowest point I prayed. I don’t know what i prayed but I just prayed. That was the first contact with God. I felt surreal happiness and feeling of comfort. I cried and cried and I couldn’t stop. I felt love. From that point on I started to change my life. Few years later I am at this point, writing this. Today I cried. I cried because of happiness. God is that happiness. God is love.
Jerry L Martin August 27, 2018
My heart goes out to you, Kalle, for your suffering and joins in joy to hear that God has connected with you. You did the right thing: at the lowest point you prayed. It is too bad people don’t pray until they hit bottom. But that is human nature, I guess. Continue reading God: An Autobiography, because I think God has a message for you personally somewhere in those pages.
Bernadette May 29, 2018
My husband and I are going through a difficult time at the moment. We went through the physical and emotional difficulties of a miscarriage, I was nearly admitted as I was bleeding so heavily. Three days later, the baby was still there on a scan confusing ourselves and the midwife. We are awaiting a scan in two weeks to see if the baby is still there.
Today, I set up an alter of spiritual items I had gathered and prayed a lot. I asked for a sign that my everything would be okay for us. You may not believe me, but my small bible fell off the table and into my lap. It was inexplicable how it happened. Seconds later, my husband phoned me from work (never happens as he can’t use his phone in his work) as he just felt the need to call.
I believe that this was a sign.
Jerry L Martin July 14, 2018
One always have to balance the skepticism that keeps us from being superstitious on the one hand and an openness to divine signals on the other. Your experience was dramatic. It might mean that the baby is fine, or it might be that, whatever you are about to go through, God will be with you and by your side and on your side in the experience. Bless you!
Jerry L Martin July 19, 2018
What an ordeal! And what a dramatic experience — a small bible falling right into your lap after you asked for a sign! I dearly hope that everything did work out well. But it is hard to interpret signs. It might mean that the baby would be fine, or it might just be a divine reminder that God will be by your side and on your side through the struggle or that, in some larger sense, everything will be well. You are living in a divinely-oriented, open-hearted way. God is your partner in that!
-- May 16, 2017
There was a time in my life were I was not happy. But one morning I experienced the most beautiful moment of my life.
The day was 15th may and on my Bible app that is on my Phone it said: Psalm 118:24 This is the day that the lord has made, and its good that we experience this day with big happiness.
When I woke up I had read that and I was still laying in my bed. On the app there is a reading plan that helps u through life with tasks and scriptures to read. So the first task was ASK- God to connect with you here. In prayer, start by slowing down, inviting God to be present. I was a little lazy to get up, so I kept laying in bed put my Phone away and hesitated to speak out loud. Instead I started thinking about life, and my struggles, and God. Yesterday, I was on my way to church and I decided to go back home not telling anyone why.. It rained the whole day when I got home.. Like God was sad for me skipping church or something.. So I thought about me being lonely as well.
I started to cry silently. The thing is.. when I cry I can control myself and stop crying by thinking about something else. I cried silently with no sound.. just tears falling from my face. and everyone in my household was either gone to school or work except my dad. He was sleeping in the living room on the couch. I wanted to stop crying but all of a sudden I started crying with Sound! and UNCONTROLLABLY! Like something took over.. I was surprised, a little scared, relieved .. many emotions were running through me at the same time. I was crying so loud that I was surprised I didn’t wake my dad up.. The most beautiful thing happened when I cried uncontrollably.. My bed is faced towards the Windows in my room and my windows were closed. I could HEAR the weather outside my room changing to a FAST wind.. it was going so fast like a tornado or a fast train. I couldn’t see it because I used the sheets to wipe my tears.. But I knew it was God. I have never felt or experienced something like this.. When I stopped crying I felt joy and I was slowly laughing through my tears and I could hear the weather changing back to normal again..
It is something u can’t explain as a human being because it is GOD. I have read a lot of stories where people have encounters with God but one thing I notice is they Always write is that they can’t explain it.. And now I totally understand why. After that happened I said : I love you God. Because he had visited me and I knew I wasn’t alone. I knew he was with me all the time, but to actually have the privilege to experience his Goodness is so wonderful! He knows u better then u know yourself. I’m so thankful that God chose me to have that experience with, After that I prayed and shared my stories with others. I feel a lot better and this was like crying my troubles away. I really needed that because I was feeling very lonely and now I’m curious to know what God has in store for me.
Jerry L. Martin May 20, 2017
Thank you for sharing this wonderful story. It is chock full of spiritual lessons you discerned. When is it “just” the wind, and when is it the wind of God? Don’t they sound just the same? Well, actually, no, they don’t. When you have a clear and honest soul — those were real tears and heartfelt cries — and have the spiritual ears to listen, you can recognize God’s breath. Of course, people can’t explain it — to “explain” it usually means to reduce it to something unspiritual, to explain it away, to deny it. If you have the experience, you know what it is — it doesn’t need explaining. You responded with a full and generous heart: “I love you God.” And you knew you weren’t alone. People complain that God didn’t make a perfect world, that good people suffer, etc., etc., and you can debate that without end. But what we most want, what we most need, is to not be alone. You now know you are not alone, that God is with you, that God is present to your life, and it is a loving presence. You are right to share your story with others, and to post it here. We learn from one another’s spiritual journeys, adventures, and ups and downs. We can learn, for example, from your final thought: to keep a keen eye out for what God has in store for you. Now that God has got your attention, there may be something he wants you to do. It may be some dramatic assignment — to feed the hungry in Africa — or it might be something as simple as being nicer to your parents or your friends or as studying harder or playing more fairly. Acts of kindness, fairness, duty, and self-care are the main stuff of a life in synch with God.
Cat Park December 19, 2016
I don’t know if anyone will read this. But I am excited and I am at peace. I want to share what happened to me. I’m 17 years old. My name is Cat Park. Before this happened I didn’t know what to call myself. I believed in God, but I didn’t. I was open that there was a God out there. I come from a rough life. People have been in and out of my life and I rarely find myself getting attached to people because I know that they’re just going to leave. Recently I found myself thinking about how I needed a constant, and I was thinking I really truly needed to seek God out. Last night I had a dream. It was so weird. But there was a particular moment in my dream where I was on my front porch looking at the sky and I asked “God, are you there?” And written in clouds appeared the word ‘yes.’ When I looked back it was gone. But today I was going through a particularly rough day and I was crying in my room. And I decided to try something from my dream last night. And so I asked God, “Are you there?” I looked up like I did in my dream and kept looking at my ceiling scanning for an answer. And right next to my fan there was His answer. On my ceiling there are ridges and bumps Idk what you call that but in those ridges and bumps I saw the word “yes.” And it’s still there and it hasn’t gone away. And I have to keep looking at it to make sure it’s real. But God is there. And he listens. I’ve been waiting for God to show himself to me and throughout my life I’m sure he did. But he finally gave me what I needed and that was a clear answer. It may be hard to believe but I hope God sends you a clear message or feeling someday to you too.
Joanne Nitkowski December 29, 2016
Cat, thank you for writing about your experiene with God. I just wanted you to know that people are listening! May I share my experience? I am finding that when my heart is honest, and I am seeking, I find Him in all that is good, and right, and true. For He is light, and in Him is no darkness at all. And He is life, and no lie is of the truth. And this is my knowledge of God that is beginning to become real in my life, because it is changing me on the inside and helping me to become the kind of person who loves what is good. And God is good!
Jerry L. Martin January 8, 2017
Thank you, Joanne, for supporting Cat and sharing your own experience of God. When, though a lifelong nonbeliever, I had my own encounter with God, I found three striking traits — God was undeniably real, benign, and authoritative. I have found God to be that way ever since the events recorded in God: An Autobiography.
Jerry L. Martin January 8, 2017
Yes, God is the great Constant, the ever-present, loving Witness of your life, the Companion who knows your suffering and your loneliness and shares your burdens and cares. It is great that you looked to God for an answer, and wonderful that God responded in so vivid a way. Be well, and bless you!
Carter Colson February 17, 2017
Cat, I’m very happy to hear about your Godly moment and am so happy for you., I am also 17 and my name is Carter. I grew up as a popular kid who had sex at an early age and started sinning young. Thankfully, my brother had shown me God and that He is real through his examples in life. My brother is only 4 years older than me and we are nothing alike physically. He has always been a computer geek and got bullied growing up. From him, I gained sympathy and compassion for all people. About a year ago I had broken up with my girlfriend who I had been dating for about a year before that. Throughout the relationship, I was leading her on and making her love me, when all I was thinking about was sexual sin. At the beginning of the relationship, I had been praying and praying that I’d fine someone and God sent me her. I turned my back on God by creating a mindset for myself that this relationship was going to be temporary. 6 months go by and I took this girls virginity and instantly lost all feelings for her. I knew what I had done was not right and that the lust I had for this girl was tearing me apart. I couldn’t stand to look at myself in the mirror for I felt too much shame. The pain of turning my back on God was too much for me so I broke up with her. I was devastated and at the lowest point of my life I had ever been. The night I broke up with her, my brother and my mom both went on their first dates with the love of their lives. Today, they are still dating these people and my mom got moved out of her crummy house into her boyfriends beautiful house who is a Godly man. My brother, on the other hand, continued to date his girlfriend until 5 months into the relationship where she was sentenced to jail for past mistakes. Within those 5 months, I witnessed my brother and my mother fall in love the correct way. This made me pray and pray that I may too experience love the way they did. My brothers girlfriend has been in jail for 8 months now and he still calls her everyday. God has displayed love for me through the holy spirit of my brother and my mom. My senior year began in august, 2 months after my brothers girlfriend has been in jail, and that was when I began speaking to God and being in his presence day by day. Every day, I began getting closer to the one I love. Finally, God gave me the perfect girl who I feel no jealousy, anger, shame, worry, or doubt with her. I never will experience those things because love doesn’t consist of any of that, and the only true way to gain love is through God. So far, I have been preaching about God and Jesus to the rest of my school for I feel I need to express His love to everyone: that is my purpose on this earth. I am here to tell you that God is more real than he has ever been, He is here! Now that I am spiritually prepared to be with the girl I love because of the love displayed from my brother and my mom, God is allowing me to fall in love and never experience jealousy, worry, doubt, hatred, shame, or lust again.
Jerry L. Martin May 13, 2017
Regardless of wrongs, you showed great spiritual openness in correctly observing, and taking to heart, the meaning of the examples set by your brother and your mother. Divine love and human love are intertwined. Our love for one another orients our souls toward God. That is true even of sexual love, when it is really love, not just lust. Our love flows “upward” toward God. Divine love flows “downward” through our love for one another. These are truths you have been learning from your own experience. You will have a long future, and many surprised, ahead of you. Meeting the right girl is the greatest gift God could give you! But do not expect to glide to a perfect life. Do not be surprised, or thrown off, by ups and down. God will be by your side in bad days as well as the good. Your task is meet whatever challenges come your way and stay on course. Those will be lessons God sends you way. Bless you!
Lukman Clark November 1, 2016
In the late summer of 1979 I was given a vision of the simultaneity of lives, past, present, future. It took me a few years to find the vocabulary to begin to describe this. The following poem gives an idea of it.
A. I spied her geometry moving
Along with her to market,
A triaxial conformation
For all the world appearing
To advance along a single line
Of time’s n coordinates.
To the howsoever blinder eye
My peripatetic Patti Doe
Travels in a greater company
Of hidden intervals, revolving
Vertices, braces, trusses
Of time lines intersecting.
B. The curve of time arcs unseen,
Overreaching the anxious mind.
What seems a dark ending edge
Is only gentle bending.
Not big bangs, not great crushes,
To use measures different,
The ways of time demarcate.
C. Biting of the luminous apple,
Fruit of the knowledge of time,
We experience the shortest time
Between times out of time lies.
Jerry L. Martin January 8, 2017
Yes, “between times out of time lies.” You probably have not come to it yet in God: An Autobiography, but I am told repeatedly that time is not what we think of it as being, and it came to me that it was like a simultaneity of times. In some sense hard to grasp, all times — past, present, and future — are always present, always real. Thank you for sharing these insights, expressed so poetically, with me and with my readers.
Jacqui Brooks August 8, 2016
My moment with God came to me after the death of my (then) only child Gregory. We had lived alone together and I was a single mother.
I returned home from the cemetery after visiting Greg’s grave and I put a c.d on the stereo.
My sweet Lord.
I moved to walk toward my kitchen and as I did, I felt a source of love (only way I can describe it) being poured into my entire body from the top of my head. I was overcome with a love I had never experienced before and in this state of mind I uttered the words “I love Jesus Christ with all my heart and so”. I had never before stated ANYTHING religious and I probably don’t go around stating it now. But I was so overcome by this experience I wanted to shout it out loud GOD IS REAL and I know this because I have just experienced him. I had no faith before this experience and in my grief and misery,I was in hell. God and his mercy gave me this experience to remember for the rest of my life. I continued to have some profound experiences around this time and I was given a vision of my son after he had passed. I still don’t understand why but now I know that God is real and I love him. These experiences have long passed but I still think of them every day
Jerry L Martin August 29, 2016
Thank you for sharing this moving experience. You have described it as it came to you – “a source of love” – and this sudden awareness that God is real. And you took it to heart. You report it not merely as a “once, a long time ago” experience but one “to remember for the rest of my life.” That experience radiates love and understanding over your entire life. And, thanks to your sharing it, the glimmer of your experience now warms and enlightens all of us. Thank you, Jacqui. May God continue to shine on you.
Steven Michael O'Shea May 14, 2016
My first experience with the Holy Spirit was when I was baptised at night in a lake at the age of around 10 years old. I recall being enveloped by a bright light and the feeling of sheer joy it brought me to tears. Though it felt like a goodbye rather than a hello. It was intense and it is a memory which will stay with me for the rest of this life experience.
I remember when I was in my early 20s I was at the train station drunk with friends and I stupidly stood on the rail line and was electrocuted. It was a scary experience. I remember feeling the electricity surge through my entire body and seeing the train coming towards me. “Luckily” I did not stick to the track and I was able to get clear of the on coming train. I thought I was “lucky” to be alive but now I know it just wasn’t my time and I was actually spared because the experience of physical pain was not enough for me.
I then had to endure the death of my nan, then I had to watch my father die in front of my two children and then my special friend Rosey died in my arms. This all happened within the space of six months.
You see it should be no emotional pain no gain because Rosey’s sudden and totally unexpected death was my catalyst. My faith was tested but then during my darkest time of utter despair was when I found you and I confess you are the best thing I have experienced. Eye found true love and I will never let you go lol
Jerry L Martin May 23, 2016
Your story is so extreme that I can’t tell if it is a parody (ending with “lol”) or just an extraordinarily difficult path to faith. I hope it is the latter, which would mean that, in spite of all your suffering, you have been able to open your heart to faith and a great blessing has come into your life. If the former, you have been disrespectful and moved farther away than ever. Either way, I hope and pray for the best for you.
James January 19, 2019
Hey. Let’s connect
Alyssa April 19, 2016
An amazing, real, experience just happened to me but I must share!! To start off I am 14 years old. When I was younger, my parents had never taught me about God. My mom didn’t believe so I was raised not to believe. My dad believed, but he never taught me about it. Lots of pain and suffering happened to me in my life. My parents were divorced, I was emotionally and physically abused by my mother and brother. I was manipulated and a very confused girl. I have a very low self esteem. I lost many many friends because how depressed I have been becoming. I was even recently a victim of a sexual crime. I committed a lot of wrong too. This included doing drugs, hanging with the wrong people, and getting into trouble at school. Everyone around me was depressed. They mistreated me and now we’re disappointed in me and made me lose all confidence. I didn’t believe God was real at all, only that my dad talked to me about it a lot and I gained a bit of interest. But still, things were terrible. My dad is broke with barely any money. Well today was a bad day for me. I felt overwhelming depressed and sad. I was getting suicidal. I looked at my phone to find my dad texted me that I needed to pray right now. I broke into tears and prayed to God. I asked him to protect me and my dad. I asked him to bring me love and joy and to forgive me and let me spread happiness. But I had doubt and I cried and cried. As I went to bed that night, I laid in my bed. My mind was racing so I had an urge to write in my journal. I began writing about how depressing my day was, but then a sudden burst of positivity went through out my body. God was speaking to me through my writing in the journal. I was writing about positivity and steps into a new chapter of my life. I will get protection and good will come to me. I am shocked and have never felt such a powerful love from God. I wanted to cry in tears of joy. I grabbed a bible my dad had given to me. I spoke to God and told him to open onto a page where he can talk to me and tell me what I need to hear. Chills ran through my body and I carefully held my fingers through the pages. Then I felt a crease. I opened to the page Psalm 3, which is protection. It acceptance of job also, which good things started to happen once God accepted hints. The psalm talked about protection. There was a part I read that said “I cried to God to speak to me and he could hear me. I woke up and he abstained me”. Very powerful to what had just happened to me. Remember I am 14, raised not to believe in God, and I was spoken to. I truly know God is real and he is bringing positivity. I am connected to the Holy Spirit. Love and protection is coming. I have to share this amazing experience. I have gained full faith, and feel as a new person. Lots of love x
Jerry L Martin April 20, 2016
You have taught us all several important lessons, Alyssa. God can speak to any person, regardless of age or past belief. God can speak to us when we are at the very pit of life, as well as when we are on top. We relate to God best when we are not just selfish but, as you do, pray for your dad and to let you “spread happiness.” One way we talk with God, whether we are aware of it at the time, is through quiet communication with ourselves, such as writing in a journal. And that can also be a way God answers. As you aptly say, “God was speaking to me through my writing in the journal.” Another way is by reading the Bible or some other source of inspiration. I have received divine guidance by a line in a novel suddenly seizing my attention. It is wonderful that, through all the emotional battering, you have been able to open your heart, seek “positivity,” take in God’s love, and “feel as a new person.” Thank you, Alyssa. Your story is a blessing to all of us.
Maxine Doles April 8, 2016
This has been a fascinating experience, reading all the comments from these wonderful people that have had various walks with our Lord and life itself. It never ceases to amaze me that we serve a God that is always every day, day in and day out, allowing us to see His glory and His desire for us to accept Him, the creator that made us and who knows us better than anybody on this earth. He knows the beginning to the end and everything in between; trying to guide us, talking to us, providing us with various situations to accept Him, never giving up, in order to deepen our faith and better help us understand His never ending love, His grace and mercy.
His word says, “I will never leave you or forsake you”. We, of course, have many trials and tribulations through this life; we are in a world of sin with satan nipping at our heels each day. It is a battle between “Good and Evil”. Who is going to win? It is our decision and only our decision. It is so very important to God, the most important decision we will ever make. It is the decision of life eternal with God and our loved ones OR eternal darkness. Yes, I have seen God do His wondrous works and He still working with me, forgiving me each day.
I was diagnosed with cancer at the age of 47. I knew God at the time, I was a believer. I experienced His presence on two occasions during this challenging time. While I was lying in bed in the hospital and had already gone through three surgeries… I was in a private room, it was early in the morning around 2 a.m., my eyes opened to see the curtain open slightly to see an outline or figure, my arm was touched and a voice said, “you are going to be okay”. I truly believe when God speaks to you, you somehow know it is from Him. It’s hard to explain, but You just know it is Him… an experience you never forget. I had another experience while I was rehabbing at home… again I felt his His presence in the room, giving me a feeling of peace and comfort. I never questioned it, it was very clear to me.
I am now 73 years old and so many situations have come and gone and my faith has been strengthened with each one. My prayers today regarding any and all situations, that the end results will be His will ONLY. I have lost a child, I have had many deaths in my family, my husband has recently had open heart surgery, I have been rich and I have been poor. I am a normal person; living, loving and praying until my life is over on this earth. I have full and complete assurance that when I die that my next life will be made perfect, without sickness, without tears or death…why? because HE HAS TOLD ME SO!!
Jerry L Martin April 18, 2016
Thank you for your moving testimonial. It is uncanny that, when God speaks to us or is palpably present, we somehow know that it is God. As a philosopher, trained to doubt everything, I find this an extraordinary fact. I would not have believed it, if it had not happened to me personally. Maxine, as a cancer survivor and as a parent who has lost a child, you have come through the Valley of the Shadow of Death. God has been by your side even, perhaps especially, in the suffering. And you have had the wisdom not to turn away from the divine presence. Be well, my friend.
Brandon Lee January 10, 2016
The time between my prior lover and current was short, maybe a month. I personally did not consider her a rebound, the connection with her started from a core value: Christianity. From the onset the relationship seemed justified and correct, we fell in love and time progressed. I cut off all connections — with the persuasion of my new lover and a few mistakes of my own — with my ex and she was not to hear from me for years. Before the final cords were cut, my ex told me she had found God, and I was genuinely happy – my current lover believed it was a ploy to get me back (can’t say I blame her).
Onto the present; my ex messaged me a couple weeks before I was planning on proposing to my current lover (interesting timing…). This message contained a plea to me calling out for forgiveness of her actions toward me during our relationship and asking me to let her know that I do not hold poison towards her so she could move on spiritually. I knew in my heart that I had forgiven her and let it go, but as far as she could see I had written her off long ago and never wanted anything to do with her.
At first, I wanted to reply, but I spoke with my current lover first and she did not want me to and I convened (my ex stated I did not have to respond, but in reality humans usually always want responses).
Time passed and I began to forget about the message from the excitement of being engaged, but then through social media I saw memories pop up with her and suddenly a weight started to hit my heart… I felt the urge to respond.
For almost two weeks my conscious was reminding me of memories of her, and I began to feel pain within my soul and anguish in the heart. I needed to respond…
So I did, through a social media, expecting a response the next day or so but it never happened. I was a bit distraught thinking maybe she did not want to respond, but then, this is where I believe God kicked in.
My mother’s coworker happened to be wearing her work shirt while picking up her child from school, and guess who happened to ask her if she knew my mother? My ex.
So my mother calls me before work and tells me this then my mind goes crazy thinking that maybe there is a way to get connected and wala it came to me — my mother could message her through social media and ask for her email.
So I reiterated what I sent through social media and sent it to her email knowing that now she will see it.
Her response did not come until two days later, but it lifted the burden that my heart had been holding onto and made my heart warm. I feel like God was calling us to put the last chapter between us behind so she and I can both move forward in our spiritual lives.
Jerry L Martin January 21, 2016
Brandon, you have to balance what you feel God wants with your own best judgment and sense of responsibility toward the people involved. Usually, former loves have to move into the past, and one’s current love must take priority. Why balance what God wants? Because maybe it is not what God wants. It is hard to be sure. In anything that engages a mix of strong feelings, it is hard for us to separate divine prompts that are real from other pulls and pushes. I don’t know what you should do, of course, but it might be well to tread slowly, thoughtfully, and prayerfully. I hope your resolution of the situation is right for all concerned, God included.
Sandra July 3, 2015
I feel He finds me a very difficult person. I also feel that He knows that my intentions are good, although at times I get very angry and don’t apologize for what i say or do. On the flip side of the coin, He knows who I am He knew it right from the beginning. My experience with God is this, the help and persistence and stamina that He sent to me when dealing with Bank of America over almost losing our home due to their error was phenomenal. I kept getting messages about David slaying Goliath. So this Italian woman got stronger and stronger, I was led to a great attorney, last name of Abdullah, meaning in Arabic servant of God. Funny huh,not a christian, he helped me with the language of law, and how to present things he helped me on an as needed basis and the fees were not expensive. God helped me get right into the office of Brian Moynihan CEO of BofA I emailed his office with a letter basically telling him of what his bank has done, I was not nice, and reminded him of how BofA actually started, I sent the same letter over and over and bombed up his email, 3 days later I got a call from his office. 3 a very magic number. From then on the situation here with my home was getting taken care of. I won this battle, Goliath was taken down with an apology, a better rate, and a new modification contract that my lawyer Mr. Abdullah said was great, because before I signed anything he needed to see it. Then Mr. Abdullah said, I don’t know how you did this, this very rarely happens, but I am very proud of you. That is how God worked with me, I still think he needs to go out for a smoke break once in awhile in his dealings with me, LOL, I do get really angry at Him still at times, but I know I do bring up some very valid points. Again, he knows I am difficult. LOL
Jerry L Martin July 13, 2015
We are all difficult, Sandra, lol. But that need not stop us from working
with God as best we can, just as you did here. And, at the end of it all,
it was Goliath, not you, who was flat on the ground. Be well.
Reubensis November 30, 2014
A chronic sinner though I am, is it possible for me to experience God? To surrender my whole being to Him, I want to be a blazing fire for God. Sir, how can I achieve this, please assist me less I wallow away in sin but one thing that gives me strongest of heart is that my soul was not created by Satan and can never get to him. I soley really on your good advice for I feel His Presence in me but don’t know how to turn it on.
Jerry L Martin December 23, 2014
To your first question, the answer is definitely Yes. Later in the book, I
am told, “In a sense, it is only sinners I love.”
To feel the Divine Presence may be simpler than you think. You do not need
a superhuman leap into pure holiness. The key is to focus on what God wants
for you in particular. When I get impatient I am told, “Remember, your only
job is to do each day what I want you to do, even if it is just to sit
there.” He may want you just to rest quietly in His Presence.
How do you do that? The first step is to stop worrying about being a
sinner. Don’t worry about your past — that just makes it harder to turn to
God. Look forward, not backward. Just relax and put your self-concerns (am
I too big a sinner? how can I become a blazing fire?) aside. Just try to
still your mind and heart. Take one small step. One day I decided to have
lunch with God, the sort of lunch where the two of you just enjoy each
other’s company without having to talk.
When you pray, still your feelings, pray quietly, and ask yourself, if God
had something to tell me today, what would it be? At first, it won’t seem
different from just you thinking and play-acting God’s side of the
conversation. Trust that, once you get the clutter out of the way, God will
be able to lead your thoughts in a fruitful direction. You will be standing
in the divine light, whether you know it or not. Eventually, you will be
able to sense His Presence, perhaps only faintly and uncertainly, but He is
Please keep me posted about how you are doing.
marina July 23, 2014
I have experienced an encounter with Jesus just as I have experienced encounters with demons and satan himself. This morning I had a dream and it was satan laughing at me. I woke up from this dream to realize God has a plan for me. He has given me a gift. In my dreams are when spirits and the devil try to attack, but here I am able to speak about it. God woke me up this morning and I know he wants me to spread his word. I want to give my all to the Lord and it is truly the greatest feeling. I hope someone reads this and asks about this gift, there is so much more to tell.
Jerry L Martin August 16, 2014
I tend not to think about evil in a personified form, but what theologian
Paul Tillich called the “demonic” does seem to be an aggressive force in the
world. There will be more about evil later in the book. It isn’t clear
what it is that God wants you to do — this is one of the most difficult
moments in spiritual discernment! May God bless you and guide you with
wisdom and love!
Charles February 6, 2014
I’m not really looking for a solution, but rather maybe an observation to my experience. I was having a good day hanging with my friends and everything going pretty swell. When I went home I was confronted with a problem that I had been dealing with in my personal life. I always prayed to god about it, but in a simple matter of just words, not going into depth about how I felt on the matter. This day the problem really got to me and I had to speak to someone about it. I went over to my couch and started praying silently to myself. As I continued praying the problem just started to break me down, I started praying harder and harder and harder till I was out of words. I told God I was lost, and sincerely couldn’t take it anymore. That although he never speaks directly to me that I need a sense of direction, that I needed help at probably one of the lowest points I had faced in my life. I kept praying until there was nothing left, and probably at the very climax of my prayer something I can’t truly describe happened. I had went down to my knees and started begging for help, I mean begging like I’ve never done before in my life, and I’ve been through some tough stuff. As I’m on my knees, I start to feel very light almost as if I could float and a very strong presence around me. The feeling you get when your eyes are closed and you just know there’s someone close to you. I let the feeling stay for a bit, and then it got so overwhelming I had to open my eyes and look around, I strongly felt my chances seeing something out of the norm would be good. I opened them and nothing was there. Although the sun outside beaming through my window, was so bright and had a very bright white color to it. My room didn’t have the lights on and was full of light. I didn’t end the prayer cause I felt there was more to be said, but I literally couldn’t get words to say from my thoughts. I pray a lot probably hourly, I’ve had my prayers answered before so I know God was real. Usually my prayers are the same short with emotion but never really any true passion. I was born Jehovah witness, which gave me the opportunity later in life to leave the religion because of how strict it was. I am familiar with God. I don’t look at myself as religious, but I am a believer of God. But this incident was different, what I felt was different. Sometimes you have to force your mind to believe you felt something, but no this was physical and mental. I don’t know what it was or why I felt that way, but at one of the lowest points of my life this crazy feeling was brought upon me. Never had I felt it before in a prayer. Almost as if someone told me they were listening. I struggle whether to call myself crazy or embrace and invest in what I felt. I don’t want someone super-religious trying to tell me what happened, but I know I felt something. I don’t really know where to go from here, I’ve already loved God and I pray regularly, I have a strong feeling God will answer my prayer, but I don’t really know. Very confusing episode in my life, as far as what to take on it. God’s never really blunt as to what He does, so you’re left with a whole bunch of missing holes as for what to think. If that was truly Him or if it was something, I truly hope it comes back because there are so many things I need answers for in my life.
Jerry L Martin February 10, 2014
What you have described, Charles, is what it is like to feel the presence of God. “… a very strong presence around me … the feeling you get when your eyes are closed and you just know there’s someone there … almost as if someone told me they were listening.”
We are not alone. God is with us and on our side. Call yourself crazy? No, this was probably the sanest
moment of your life. Embrace and invest in what you felt? Yes, it is a blessing, one you should cherish and remember and keep close to your heart.
My sense is that God will almost certainly help you, but help may come in a form you do not expect. You may not even recognize it as help. It might come from someone around you or within reach — a friend, a minister, a counselor, or just a stranger. It could require that you reach out for their help. Pay close attention if you sense that God is pointing you in a direction. Be well, my friend, and God bless!
Matthew Foster February 1, 2014
Jerry, reflection on your experience of hearing God speak to you reminds me of others with similar accounts, and both lead me to consider a variety of questions. Various people in history have said God spoke to them, and now a friend of mine, whose sanity and rationality I do not doubt, is one of them. What am I to make of what he reports—and of what others reported long ago as well? I notice that as long as I am in the majority who has not had such an experience, I can comfortably view your and their accounts as curious, puzzling specimens of abnormal human experience. But even a brief look at what more than a few people have written at this website indicates that there are more like you than I imagined–yikes!—leaving me to wonder if we “normal” people are actually in the minority, and you all know something the rest of us don’t!
What should we make of such experiences? What do you make of your own experience, Jerry, and how do you compare it to other such cases in history? You have written eloquently of how you accepted the authenticity of what you experienced. But I know you acknowledge that such an acceptance is not the end of reflection on what has happened to you. Is God really speaking to you and to all of these people in history? What about the ancient prophets of the Hebrew scriptures, like Isaiah and Jeremiah, Amos and Hosea—did they really hear what they wrote down? Or did they invent it and deceive us? Or were they trying to give expression to what they thought God would say if God were to speak in a human language? But then why go to such lengths to describe a seemingly independent source of these thoughts? Whatever we conclude about them, should it also guide how we view other famous cases? What did Muhammad really hear or experience? Or Joseph Smith who founded the Mormons, or Mother Ann who started the Shakers? What about Baha’u’llah of the Bahais, Guru Nanak of the Sikhs, or Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of the Ahmadiyyas?
Are what you and others report to be God’s messages identical or at least consistent, which could suggest they have the same source, or at least are parallel phenomenon? Or are these reports of God’s message incompatible, which could suggest not all of them can be valid, and we have to figure out how to sort through them? Or are none of them what they appear to be, and they should all be demythologized, deconstructed somehow? And in that case, do they tell us more about human beings than about claims for God’s reality or significance? Are the essential choices either “God really speaks to some people” or “This is all imaginary projection”? While these two appear to be mutually exclusive, is it possible in any sense for both to be true? Are there any additional possibilities?
Of course, any of us can choose to ponder these questions, and to many of us they may seem ultimately irresolvable. But most of us haven’t had the experience of hearing God speak, or even of believing we have received some inaudible kind of message from God. Thus, Jerry, you have an opportunity most of us do not have, to engage in an internal dialogue–between the mind which has had these experiences of God speaking, and the mind that can investigate, as logically and as objectively as one can, what these experiences mean.
And it’s an opportunity to compare, indeed, to test in some way, the validity of those experiences, or at least to probe their nature, by comparing them with the reports that others have similarly made. Some in your position might reply that doing so is in some way incompatible with accepting the authenticity of the experience, and might therefore deliberately choose not to “stand outside” themselves to examine their experience. But somehow I don’t think you are that kind of person. Nor do I myself think one must take such a position, although I acknowledge that on this I can only speak as an outsider. On the contrary, it seems to me, to be a human being is to be thrown into a life where we cannot avoid such questions, a life in which these questions assail and also intrigue us—and, yes, may also tempt with distracting digressions as well as enlighten with new understanding.
To take one example of this kind of comparing and testing: Muhammad said God told him there would be no subsequent messengers after him. Yet you are one of many since Muhammad (including several of those noted above) to say God has spoken to you, which already contradicts Muhammad’s account, and according to you, from what I can tell of your experience, God says something quite different than what Muhammad claimed, on this and many subjects. Leaving aside how orthodox Muslims would not only dismiss your claim but regard you as a deceiver and heretical blasphemer, what are we to conclude—and most importantly here, what do you conclude—about the relationship between Muhammad’s account and yours? Who is right, and why?
But perhaps neither claim should be judged by whether it corresponds to an objective reality, which in any case seems impossible to resolve empirically. Alternatively (and this, for now, is perhaps my response to my own inquiry here), we could interpret such claims through an hypothesis about how all humans are quite capable of finding within ourselves many voices. They range from the “ordinary” internal dialogues and conflicts we all experience, to the neuroses that in some way hobble most of us, to rarer instances of persons with multiple personalities, of cultures where spirit possession proliferates, and of shamans who mediated gods to their communities. All these voices give us information about the world, the whole of reality, and, simultaneously, information by means of which we try to navigate our way in that reality.
We may wish that the investigation of such experiences could end by telling us whose claims are correct and whose are false. I suspect we all cling (or one of the voices within us clings!) to the hope that there are certain experiences which can be divided into two groups—those to be either respected as authoritative, or dismissed as delusory. And obviously, sometimes we must, with fear and trembling, make such judgments about the more mundane, internal conflicts we all experience. But at least with regard to claims to have heard God’s voice, what seem to be questions about what we can know may really be questions about what we should value—about whether we should regard someone’s “abnormal” experiences as either privileged or pathological, as humans are so wont to do. That is, we would secretly like to find out whether an experience such as yours is something to which we should defer as a foundation for belief and authority (“does Jerry give us new proof of God?”), or is something meaningless or even dangerous (“should we ignore or humor Jerry, or perhaps pity or shun him?”).
But the more constant and sober truth seems, at least to me, to be that no experience—whether high or low, whether inspiring or suspicious, whether Jerry’s or someone else’s—no experience provides a magical answer to all our questions. And no experience excuses any of us, as either subjects or observers, from the tasks of life and the challenges of being faithful to God as best we can understand God. While that conclusion may be disappointing, there is at least one respect in which it leaves me glad: It preserves Jerry, certainly in my mind and I hope in his, from the burden of somehow having to prove he is neither weirdly gifted nor bizarrely deficient, and lets him continue to be himself—and just my friend.
Jerry L Martin February 10, 2014
Most religious people sometimes sense the divine presence. It may be a moment of inner prompting or warning, similar to the voice of conscience. It may be a significant “coincidence” that carries a meaning or a task put in your path or a door suddenly opened. It may be a moment of worship or meditation, of tragedy or joy, of profound loss or miraculous rescue. It may occur in the I-Thou of love and family and friendship, or in appreciation of the mighty frame of the universe, as we sense the divine auspices. Or, for some of us, it comes in a voice or vision. The voice and vision are not strange, separate categories. They are merely at one end of a spectrum of ways the divine reality manifests itself. If you were an atheist, all this would make no sense, of course, but this is a conversation between friends.
Can such experiences be mistaken? Of course. Human beings are fallible. Mistakes can range from mental derangement to mistaking the thrill of seeing the Grand Canyon for a burst of the divine. This is what theologians know as “the problem of spiritual discernment.” “Test the spirits whether they be of God” is St. Paul’s advice.
How do you test the spirits, the voice, the divine prompting or warning? There are two places to check, the inward and the outward. Was the person on drugs or prone to fantasy? Does the person have a fanatical desire to believe that God is speaking to him or her, or an ego gratification at stake? When I felt a swell of pride at hearing from God, the line immediately went dead. When I pray, I have to quiet my mind in order to “tune in” to the divine presence. Meditation and devotional moments can be helpful. I have to put aside my own fears and desires, and become quite willing to “let Thy will be done.” The other place to check is the voice or prompting itself. If it is telling me that it is okay to cheat on my wife, it is probably not God speaking. Or to jump off the cliff. Even Jesus rejected such devilish dares.
Did the ancient prophets actually hear God speak? Why not? It is much more likely (if you believe in God at all) than that they took the liberty to attribute to God merely what they themselves thought. Look at the circumstances. More often than not, they were quite surprised to hear God speaking to them and resisted the assignment God gave them.
What of all the other prophets and seers? Here we have to exercise spiritual discernment, and it is not easy. Because of my own experience, I have a bias in favor of giving some credence to their reports, but always keeping in mind that we are all fallible. In my own case, it is clear that God speaks to me in my own language and using my own concepts (which are sometimes challenged). God answers questions as I have framed them. Someone else would have asked different questions.
Later in the book, I am told to read the ancient scriptures of the various religions and ask about them. I am told that the divine reality has many sides, both personal and transpersonal, both immanent and transcendent. One reason the various revelations differ is that the divine reality manifested different sides of itself to different peoples, and I am told why. I am told what parts they got right and what parts less so.
What status should a reader give to what God has told me? First, I am fallible (as were the seers and prophets). Second, I was told explicitly that God was not giving me any authority. My role is solely to be “an honest reporter of what you are told when you pray.” What should the reader make of this report? Well, it certainly could be the voice of God, as I believe it is, so I think you and other readers should take it seriously. You should read it with an open heart and mind, guided more by your own spiritual attunement than by more distant doubts and worries, and take in those parts that speak to you, as if you alone were their intended audience.
I have not answered all your questions, Matthew, and I would welcome further discussion. Be well, my friend.
Maple Green Beans January 17, 2014
I really enjoy you sharing your message, THE message, because I do believe their is one unifying message. There is, a for lack of better terms, a harmonic expression that is in all living things; it permeates all that we are and every living thing around us, and we are part of that too.
When we have something to tell someone,we communicate through words. To be hear, which is a vibration. Cymatics. To feel! To truly feel the greatest story ever told. In the Bible it says in the beginning was the Word. That’s a very powerful statement! So powerful that it caused men to write IT down…for what? What could possibly be so important that men were moved to put what they were experiencing down onto paper. They were inspired!…from breath… from the Living Word! The energy is always there because it comes through us, not to us. A lot of people are waiting for that perfect AH! to come to them without realizing they have to participate in the connection. Its like waiting for the phone to ring rather than picking it up. Its there. Waiting like a lover. For me, we were taught trinity, 3 in 1. So I always anthropomorphically have the Father…The protector, The second part is different because I didn’t have a strong brotherly kind of relationships to associate with, So the second part is like a good Jewish Mother, one who give you advice, warns you of the dangers and prepares you for what is to come. The third part is the Spirit, he’s the one that will take you there, he’s the party bus going to Woodstock. He comes with a lot to share and it is unlimited: Wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety and awe! I think the main thing is to be at peace with the idea that there is a higher power, that we are NOT the be all end all and that we are connected to every single living thing…when you get plugged into that, it really is a WOW! Look forward to reading more!
Jerry L Martin February 4, 2014
Yes, waiting for that perfect Ah, an undeniable epiphany, a clear communication like, as you put it, the phone ringing, is a mistake. Too often we overlook all the other ways the divine is present to us, shimmering beneath the surface of everything we see, humming in the background of wind and surf and word in, as you nicely put it, “a harmonic expression that is in all living things.” We wait for a message that is already there if we but notice it.
piyush goel September 28, 2013
Yes I have true experience with God, in the year 2000,I had a major accident. I was in I.C.U (at that time I did not know how many days had passed). I was unconscious there– all of a sudden I was conscious and I felt there is God near me who saved my life (8-10 fractures,14 blood bottles and many operations and fully 9 months rest).
YES YES GOD IS WITH ME.
Jerry L Martin October 20, 2013
What strikes me about your story is not so much your dramatic rescue from the brink of death but the deeper miracle that, barely conscious, you were instantly, unmistakably aware of God’s presence, God’s nearness. The worst experience of your life became the best. And, to this day, you know with palpable certitude that God is with you. I pray that you will always be blessed in this way.
JoHn_DoE August 18, 2013
I used to be a person of the world, wallowing in the pleasures and desires of the flesh and laziness. I would sleep with my girlfriend, masturbate, watch pornography, engage in sexual talks, flirt with other women, lust after many others, buy sex toys, over eat, and curse like a sailor;(whilst calling myself an adult). I was obsessed with the sex, like it was a drug or something (lust) and I was also full of envy, and didn’t much care for the scripture at all (I was afraid that it’d cause me to stop sex). I talked my girlfriend out of her walk in Christ for that reason. As a result, she started loving me more than God. Heck, I had my beautiful girlfriend who I planned on marrying (6 year relationship), I didn’t have to worry about rent and became arrogant/filled with pride, was abusive to the special needs kids at my job for fun (wrath), had friends who were almost as bad as me, and was satisfied to let others do for me. I became content and stagnant; no longer seeking more out of life or putting forth any effort to go places (sloth). I was just some overweight sinner (gluttony).
Then, it all happened in a year: 2011. I had a brain tumor (the doctor said, “if you don’t get it operated on, you WILL die.” That’s pretty scary from your doctor). The surgery was a success but my life was threatened with my head pumping out too much CSF (Google it). So, I had another surgery to put a shunt in. That shunt failed, so another was installed. I had radiation treatments. Got fired from the hotel I worked at, and I got fired from a school I worked at later in the year. Then, the truly crippling thing happened. I came down with radiation side effects which caused swelling in my brain and a loss of some cognition (balance, memory, nystagmus eyes, left eyes stuck left, drooling, slurring speech like my mouth was full, could not swallow food so it came out through my nose, could not get an erection, double breathing at times, mild hallucinations of a bright light behind my eyes that shined, and feeling like my eyes were moving around my face) On top of that, I lost all of my friends, but not my girlfriend. No one else could understand me when I talked, but she could. That is still so precious to me. Sadly, she broke up with me from being stressed out at my condition. Ultimately,she told me goodbye when I explained my love for her will never die. I was upset. I was depressed and hurt. I tried to accept the fact that she was gone, but then I felt something. I loved her, that went without saying, but what I felt was a love that was more powerful than anything ever ( a love that makes you do anything for that other person regardless of you or what happens), true love. I knew that she is the one.
I was lost. I didn’t understand what happened. Here I was, happy and on top. Now, I was this broken, disabled guy. It was sad. I wondered why God had this happen. Why I was being punished. I thought that he hated me. I started going to church for guidance, looking for some solution. I needed to know, “Why was this happening to me?”. Shortly after that, I made a decision to get my own bible, understanding that God hates no one, and things happen for a reason. About a day after I had it, my speech improved a little.
I read passages, scriptures, verses, and started living a more Christian lifestyle, meanwhile slowly getting back my physical traits that were gone (speech is nearly all returned to normal, balance has gotten much better, and everything else is recovering). I joined a church in my neighborhood, and look forward to Sundays. Meanwhile, I read my bible daily, no longer cuss, don’t masturbate (nearly for 2 years), I’ve lost 60 pounds, attend college, and I am a great man of faith.
Now, all that remains is her. I am waiting on her to come back. God told me to just wait, to stay and endure my situation. I’ve had visions and signs from God that point to her return to my life. So with faith, I’ll wait for her. I still love her very much after all, and I can say that with a big smile. I may have lost all my friends, I may be in a home situation that I’m not pleased with right now, but I have faith and hope that it will get better. I hope my story helps someone.
Jerry L Martin September 6, 2013
Your story reminds me of the time my parents and a church group visited an inner-city mission. It was the sort of place where someone who is down and out can get a hot meal and a clean bed for the night. We were given a tour and told about the work of the mission, and then we ate with the street people who were there that night. After a bit of talk and singing, anyone who felt moved to say something was invited to do so. To our surprise, one of the most respected members of the church, a solid family man who had a Ph.D. and an important government position spoke up. He told everyone about his own wasted youth, his days as an alcoholic, and how it ruined his life until God, as he felt, turned him around. It was the most moving testimony I had ever heard, and I hoped it did as much for the street people as it did for me.
Yours is the story of a different but equally destructive addiction, which sent you to the very bottom. One never knows which moments of despair also contain latent hope, an offer of grace. As for your girlfriend, you do need to be careful. The feeling that God is promising to do for us the very thing we most desperately want can just be the echo effect of our own earnest desires. I hope that, if it is right for you and right for her, your dreams will come true. And, if it is not right, may God bless you in His own way.
Letitia July 2, 2013
I would like your input on my situation. I’ve been seriously considering conversion to Judaism from Christianity. I’ve been attending Shabbat Services, and as the Rabbi requested, continued services at my Catholic Church.
Rabbi asked me to make an appointment to speak with him about my experience in attending services. What I felt and what my thoughts were. He wanted to know my thoughts and feelings knowing I am coming from the Catholic Faith into Judaism; where I always felt I belonged(since I was around 8 years old). When I first began to attend he told me to continue my services at the Catholic Church while I feel my way at Shabbat Services. I did set up my appointment with Rabbi. We spoke, he saw some changes in me. He asked what bothered me the most about services. I told him getting the Hebrew pronunciation correct and keeping up during services in Hebrew. He gave me a book to take home to study. He told me to now set up an appointment with the priest at the church to discuss my possible conversion. I don’t know why he would want me to meet up and discuss my conversion with him(priest). Well, I went to Shabbat last night as usual and attended the Catholic Church today at 5 PM. I never did believe in going on Sunday(man-made law). I spoke to the priest that I had forgotten to call him last week to set up an appointment. He stared at me as if he saw the devil because I was wearing the Star of David. I spoke to him after services. He was rather rude and nasty to me and told me I needed to make up my mind. When I’m just doing what I was told by the Rabbi. All the priest did for me today was make my decision so much easier, in which I was headed the way I’m going anyway. Will just happen so much quicker and easier.
I truly believe G_d has me going this path for some reason, not just my own reasoning. Awhile back I prayed to G_d. I told HIM I was at a crossroads in my life. I asked for guidance in what direction for me to go. I also said that if it be HIS WILL, then let it be done. I guess the priest’s attitude towards me was my sign.
I started attending Torah study two weeks ago. I am planning a trip to Israel with the Congregation in February. I won’t know for sure until December about that. I hope there is still room left for me to go at such a late notice. That is if things work out that I can make it. I’m so excited about that!
Jerry L Martin July 8, 2013
The decision facing you is not uncommon, Letitia. God calls some people to
stay in the tradition in which they were raised; He calls others to a
different place. The rabbi was wise in asking you to speak to your priest.
Sometimes people change faiths for light and transient reasons — the
minister was boring, or they took offense at something. The question is not
about particulars you like or dislike. It is about your relationship with
God. It is about where God is most available to you or wants you to be. As
far as I can tell, you are going out this decision exactly this spirit.
Thank you for sharing this with us.
Jenny May 29, 2013
Your latest chapter, 65, has filled me with wonder and recognition. I don’t know how to compose a comment, or how to compose this letter, to be honest, but I will try, because I have received the same revelation from God: that He longs to be related to intimately, authentically, as two people do.
This has been the crux of His message to me for the past two years. In these past two years, He has drawn me closer and closer to Himself.
At first, I had the sense of His presence as something like the Shekinah cloud of presence- I had been accustomed to experiencing Him in this way from early mystic experiences and from a year or so in a Pentecostal church.
Then His presence became almost palpable- as if He was with me in person, but not visible. This shocked me. At this time, I began to do research on the Christian mystic tradition and discovered that Teresa of Avila claimed that Jesus was with her for three years, but invisibly.
I thought to myself, “Well, if I’m insane, I guess I’m insane in a way similar to Teresa of Avila and that’s not so bad.”
In fact, the mystics, especially in the Catholic traditions had, it seemed to me, extremely bizarre interactions with God and yet they believed them fully. I realized that God does not always make human sense.
Also, later, I began to realize that God bends down to us where we are, and that their interactions with Him were as much a product of who He was as who they were and their own era, their own religion. It was as though their own selves were the lens through which God suffered Himself to be seen, so there was some natural distortion of Himself.
But He told me that He is not scared of this natural distortion- He is perfectly capable of translating the truth of who He is directly to people’s hearts, and He always does so at a personal level. He has told me that the way I understand Him is through the lens of who I am and how we speak and how we understand Him now, in this era.
He said that I am a mirror- and because I am human, the mirror of my spirit is not perfect, but it does not have to be. I just have to be present with Him, keeping my eyes on Him and present in this life- He said, ‘You are to be present in this life, living out of faith, hope and love.” But He Himself works at the heart level that is deeper than words.
I began to know Jesus on a very personal level. I had grown up hearing the language that “Jesus is your friend” but I didn’t really take that seriously, or indeed, know how to understand that, because I perceived Him as being far away, constantly judging, always disappointed and involved with more important things than myself.
I began to know Him as someone full of patience, delight in the details, delighting simply in being together, full of good humor, generous, interested, gentle, perceptive, self-sacrificing.
However, I could not understand why He spent so much time with me without making me some powerhouse of religious performance- it seemed as if He was getting very poor value back for His significant investment in my life.
I continued to be the same person- eventually with less anxiety, less guilt and less religious bondage and with more joy, peace and tenderness- but still, basically the same person.
So one day, I said to Him in complete frustration, “Why are You with me, if You aren’t making me perfect or perfectly productive?”
And He answered, with just as much intensity, “To be with you.”
And I had to laugh and put my head down on the desk in a combination of humorous wonder and frustration.
I was walking with Him once, thinking about this verse that talks about the steps of a Godly person are ordained by God and that God delights in all the details of their life.
I thought this was excessive on the part of God- that He should delight in all the details.
“You must say that because eventually, all those details will be the praise of Your glory,” I said to Him.
“And I love you,” Jesus pointed out, with His loving humor, as if to say, let’s not forget the main point here!
After a year, my ego began to trip me up, thinking that I was somehow earning these experiences of God and then I did trip up physically and while healing, I let go of the entire idea of earning God.
Then I let the experience go, for half a year. It was as if my spirit were a plot of ground that had produced a large harvest and God was letting it lie fallow for a season, to recharge and regroup.
That is when I was learning that phrase: “Let God be God, let the world and other people be their selves; let you be you.”
Then He returned, but deeper than before. My love for Him was deeper, I trusted Him more completely, I knew His voice very well. A great deal of both my anxiety and my pride were gone, leaving me open, present to Him and receptive.
My experiences with Him began to become more visual. I had had a vision of a room once- corresponding to Jesus saying that in the Father’s house are many dwelling places.
I was in the habit of resting in and talking to and worshiping Him at night, before I fell asleep. As I was doing this, I began to find myself in that room.
This was disconcerting, at first, but by then, I had much more perspective on the mystery of the presence of God, so I was able to simply accept the experience. At first, the room was closed off, but as I became more confident and comfortable, the walls came down and it became more of a front porch.
Almost every night I am with Him in those rooms, talking, or just being together, or caught up in mutual love- that is, I worship and adore Him and He loves me. He has a degree of vulnerability that is breath taking. He is filled with emotion- emotion flows naturally through Him.
I don’t understand His emotion. He frequently is caught up in pain and grief over the pain and grief of this life. I don’t know if He feels this, at some level, continuously or how that works.
But I increasing believe that He is waiting for completion- for the brokenness of this life to be healed, to wipe the tears from every eye. He seems to be hanging between now and that time, though of course, He dwells also outside of time and so He is in all times at once.
But I know that this grief and pain sometimes moves through Him and He lets me comfort Him- though what comfort I can be to Him, I do not know. But He seems to long for this recognition of His emotional vulnerability and then He seems to delight in being responded to authentically. He doesn’t hold back, He gives Himself freely and completely.
For me, the idea of the Trinity helps explain or put into context His way of giving and receiving. It seems that the very nature of God is to be in relationship to Himself- He is caught up in recognizing, adoring, having perfect faith in, yielding to and receiving Himself as one and as separate persons.
I’m beginning to believe that we were created to join in this intimate dance, this waterwheel of love- and He is always coaxing us a little bit more into the loving relationship.
I have felt myself caught up in such intimacy that it seemed as if I were melting into Him- as if He were one flame, and I was one small flame, and we were joined at the wick, where it’s white light and the heat melts and the two flames are swallowed into one.
But I never completely lose the sense of myself as an individual life. Sometimes I actually want to- the pleasure is so great that I feel as if I wish to be completely enveloped into God.
“You are my Life,” I have told Him. “We are one life.”
“But you are your own little life spark,” He reminded me. This seemed to delight Him very much; He did not want me to forget it.
It seems to me that the things that prevent people from moving toward this kind of intimate, personal giving and receiving with God, or even realizing this is possible, is their wrong image of Him- exactly what He has told you.
People seem to be largely caught up in their religious fear of a God that is too huge, too unknowable, too far beyond reach and also in their personal feelings of guilt, shame.
Also there is this idea that true delight is found outside of God- that God is all rules and tight self-control and rigid adherence to law, an idea that I can’t help think makes any other way of living, no matter how self-destructive, much more appealing.
Or if they are like most mystics or spiritual seekers, they are seeking an impersonal oneness- the Life force, as it were. They wish to be absorbed into this; to lose consciousness of themselves.
In any case, I think I am rambling now. I just wanted you to know that God seems to be taking us on very similar spiritual journeys- and many other people are also being caught up in this- through the emerging understanding of the Trinity, for example, and teachers like Richard Rohr.
As always, I eagerly await each new chapter as you present it on your book and I am grateful for your continued obedience to the guidance of God in your life, even when He takes you way outside the comfort zone in such a public way. That is not easy.
Your friend and sister in Divine Love,
Jerry L Martin June 1, 2013
Jenny, judging from my own experience, what you write reaches to the heart
of life with God, and of His life with us. “God bends down to where we
are,” yes, and lets “our own selves” be “the lens” through which He lets
Himself be seen. Just so. God relates us to “intimately, authentically, as
two people do.” Yes, and that — relating to us — is, one might say, the
essence of God, what God is. Not distant, not impersonal, not impervious,
not the God of the textbooks, but a God who is so shockingly personal, that
even a word like “vulnerable” is not out of place.
Shelly April 27, 2013
Hello, I really hope I can put this in words the correct way. When I was single with two little girls. I was at the end, the father was taking me to court over and over. I had run out of money. I had nowhere to turn, I went to a little church that I went to as a child. And prayed, pleaded, cried out to God in the parking lot please God don’t let them take my children they are so young they will not understand what is happening to them. The girls had never seen them. I went home that night and everyone was in their bed sleeping–the house was peaceful. I took a last look at my girls sleeping.:)
I went to bed myself. That night as I was sleeping a voice came to me. This was a voice in my ear not in my head…It said nothing but (I hear you) It was the sound of rushing waters in a voice. I never understood until I read the Bible about the voice of rushing waters. When I did read this it made me smile. The girls do not have to see Him, the girls are happy. God took care of this. 🙂
But later in my life, I came to God again in times of troubled hardship. I had just gotten out of a bad relationship. I went to God and prayed again, “Please God forgive me please. I want to hear you.” Again alone with my girls. That night while I was sleeping a sweet smell– such a sweet smell came in my room.The next day I found myself looking for this smell..anything that would come close. Later I got married to a wonderful man that loves the Lord. But that’s not all and we went to a small little church. I started to hear God even more and I kept praying for more understanding guidance. I would get this feeling from within and I would pray about things that needed to be prayed about and things to come. Never did this make me feel bad. I learned to pray when I would learn to pray when I would learn to pray when I would get these feelings.
Later we moved. I guess the cares of the world got me. I started not to hear God. I STARTED TO WONDER WHAT I was doing wrong. I wanted to be back where I was at with our Lord. Later my Mother got sick with mersa. I prayed, I read the bible, believing God would heal. I feel as if I let her down, what did I DO WRONG did I not pray right, not enough faith, what did I do? It’s like He didn’t hear me. I still don’t feel like I’m hearing Him. I haven’t gone back to church I don’t know I can handle hearing about answered prayers…I miss hearing Him. But I’m also so hurt. I miss my mother also. Why don’t I HEAR GOD ANYMORE????
Jerry L Martin April 27, 2013
Dear Shelly, you did not fail. Your mother’s death was not your fault, in
any way, shape, or form. I know we sometimes imagine that, if we just pray
hard enough, God will surely come through. But it doesn’t work like that.
People are born, and people die. That is the way of things. Remember what
God told you — “I hear you.” You don’t have to hear Him, He hears you.
That’s what matters. The cherished assurance you received that night was
not for one moment or one day or one week; it was for you to remember for
the rest of your life and sing thanks.
Shelly May 2, 2013
Thank you so much…:) Shelly
Anonymous April 23, 2013
I can see His back. He keeps it turned to me. He doesn’t speak, makes no sign I exist. I don’t like him.
Jerry L Martin April 27, 2013
Many people have times of feeling that God’s face is turned away,
“hidden” as the Old Testament says. You do not have to feel God’s presence
in order to pray. Just pray anyway, and tell God exactly how you feel. You
can even shout and stamp! Remember also that sometimes, when people think
that God is unavailable, they are the ones who are blocking the connection.
Or it is there, but they are missing signals that may be faint and difficult
to recognize. May God respond to your distress!
Patricia Wright March 11, 2013
I have heard God’s voice like a whisper. One day I was driving my car and was at a stop sign. The highway was in front of me. A truck hauling rock (not a pickup) had its signal on to turn on the road I was on. I didn’t see any other cars or trucks. I looked under the truck to see if I saw any sign of a car or truck and I didn’t. I started to press on the gas to turn left where the truck was turning in front of me when I heard “no”. I stopped. I still didn’t see anything and started to put my foot on the gas again. “No,” I heard. So again I didn’t go. Right then a car went past the truck that was turning on the highway in front of me. I had never seen the car before. If I had went when I started to go I would have been hit on my driver’s side door and probably killed. I was so shaken I called my husband and told him God saved my life.
Jerry L Martin March 16, 2013
Patricia, what a wonderful story! And a perfect example of what I mean by “paying attention.” Someone else might have dismissed the “no,” perhaps so automatically she didn’t even hear it. Instead, you let it guide you. When something unusual happens to me, I ask myself, is God trying to tell me something? Is there a message in this? That would be a good question for you to ask.
Tamara Turner March 9, 2013
I keep having a “feeling” that I need to get intouch with you somehow but don’t really know what to say because ALL my “friends” say that I am crazy and don’t know what I am talking about.
Jerry L Martin March 16, 2013
Tamara, thanks for acting on that feeling. Let’s not worry about your friends for now. What has prompted your sense that you need to get in touch with me? Just tell me your story. I will be very interested in hearing it.
Patricia Wright February 26, 2013
I believe in God. It’s the people in the church that let you down. I went to church for years and when I got sick no-one came to check on me. I had a brain enuryism and was in icu for 21 days. It took a long time to recover and remember things like cooking. Never did 1 person call or show up. I told my husband I wouldn’t go back to that church for they didn’t care about their members. That was 3 years ago.
Jerry L Martin February 28, 2013
Patricia, thanks for sharing that experience. Those must have been bleak, scary days for you and your husband! I hope you are now healthy and flourishing! It is a bitter irony, and surely a source of great suffering to God, when “religious” people fail so miserably to live up to their own standards. That leads some people turn against God, but these are failings of human beings, not of the divine. At some churches, love is more than a word. I hope you can find one in your area. Be well!
Patricia Wright March 11, 2013
I didn’t forsake God. I love him more than I did before. I am better,thank God. I did lose faith in the Church people. They pray and preach about helping people but not one person did. My husband had to do all the cooking, cleaning and taking care of our 32 year-old autistic son. It was hard on him trying to do the shopping and take care of me and everything. Hopefully one day I will find a church.
Jerry L Martin March 16, 2013
Patricia, it is a terrible thing when the church you counted on lets you down. You are right not to let that turn you against God. Faith in God is different from faith in a particular church. Many people cannot make the distinction. When they reject a church, they reject God. You did not make that mistake. Each congregation is different, and there are many that are loving, supportive communities. One of them is waiting for you!
Renata van Gelderen January 24, 2013
Your story is very interesting, Jerry. The one thing that especially struck me, is that love was the ‘trigger’ for your conversion, if I may put it that way. As it was in my case (I will receive baptism during the Easter Vigil at the end of April, Deo volente). According to the New Testament God is Love, so in that sense this should not come as a surprise! In my case, it was the dedication and surrender that I saw in the way Mass was celebrated by Cardinal Dominik Duka (on television!) that tipped me over the edge, so to speak. I could see the Cardinal’s love for Christ and somehow I trusted him and allowed myself to fall into the realm ‘that passes all understanding’. “Allowed myself” isn’t quite correct, of course, it just happened, with or without ‘my’ consent, I’m not quite sure, but I am in love with Jesus ever since, that’s for sure!
For me, conversion is a 180˚ turn, starting from the position of a more or less autonomous individual who ‘has’ a life in a world, so from the position of ‘my’ life, ending up in Him: my life is His life. More and more I seem to realise what this actually means and although I experience an underlying happiness most of the time and there are many moments of great joy, it is also proving to be a bumpy road. Only recently I had an experience, probably best described as horror vacui. I had been restless all evening, couldn’t concentrate on anything and finally decided to listen to some music. As I sat in my armchair listening to violin pieces I seemed to calm down a bit, but suddenly I was overcome by great fear. Not fear of something, just fear and it was very intense. I grabbed the arms of my chair, but then realised that the physical world wasn’t going to give me any support. It was ludicrous to look for safety there and I knew it. I then folded my hands in prayer and asked God: is this You? From that moment onwards the fear became less intense, slowly a calmness came over me and finally I was able to say: Lord, I love You, I follow You. Phew. During all this time the violin was still playing on my stereo and it became very clear to me, that this sound could only be here through the grace of God. The sound of the violin was dancing on a knife’s edge, if it would move ever so slightly to one side, it would tip over and not exist. But it did exist! Wow, never before in my life was sound perceived as so precious, was anything perceived as so infinitely precious, just because it exists, because God chooses to hold it in His hands and doesn’t let go. Deo gratias.
Jerry L Martin February 4, 2013
Renata, your story is rich with meaning and insight. You trusted, you opened yourself, though it happened more to you than through you. That is what theologians call grace. Your life took a 180 degree turn, from the autonomous ego leaning on the physical world, to divine surrender, to living through God. And then the stark moment of fear, fear that your grip on the world was powerless against, fear that, against all expectations, drew you closer to God. On a knife’s edge, yes, but also dancing! An amazing and wonderful story! Thanks for sharing it.
Rick Lomax January 12, 2013
How lucky you are to hear him, I have cried out to him in the night from the depth of my pain, and cannot. I continue to search as I always have, a pilgrim forever, and I know I am at a decision making point. I pray that guidance will be found in my attempts to overcome my inner and outer struggles.
Jerry L Martin January 17, 2013
Rick, I hear you, my friend.
One thing we all have to keep in mind is that God does not solve all our problems. Financial problems have to be addressed financially, marital problems may call for counseling, personal problems may benefit from therapy, health problems from a doctor or better living, and so on. But God is with us in these struggles. He is by our side; He is ON our side. And He does provide guidance, usually not a voice as I have (which was needed since He wanted me to write this book), but subliminal hints that are hard to detect. There are three excellent books that can help you: How to Listen to God by Charles Stanley, The Art of Praying by Romano Guardini and Prayer: Finding the Heart’s True Home by Richard J. Foster.
Meanwhile, may God give you the strength to go forward. Bless you!
Thomas J. Moretti July 8, 2013
Jesus Christ spoke to me through the Holy Spirit on December 17, 2011 after I begged him for mercy he showed up and we had a conversation for one night. I am so blessed because this does not happen all too often from what I understand? This is what it took for Jesus to win me over to him, I did not have this awesome experience because I am better than anyone else. I had this experience because God knew this was exactly what I needed 🙂
Wayne Rumsby January 12, 2013
I was born into a tight little Plymouth Brethren Gospel Hall, where Darby and his dispensational chart were taught as “God Breathed”. Some would say that it was what we were supposed to believe, or even that it was all there was to believe. I took my place at the Lord’s Table (entered into fellowship) late, in my twenties. By the time I was thirty my imagination made incompatible. I tried walking away. That only lasted a few years, and then I had my first God encounter. The short version is that after swearing never to go back to church, the need for daycare services found me standing in the lobby of a church feeling like I was in His hands. It was intense. I knew that God was guiding me. I was also pissed because he was calling me back into the church, the broken whore of a bride (Gomer).
A few years later I had another turning point, calling moment. I was on the verge of bankruptcy, our business was sinking, I had to go get a job. It felt like utter failure. At the same time God called me to move my family downtown ( inner city). I tested that request, challenging God to get me a job downtown. He did, and a house. It’s true, I went from teetering on bankruptcy, to owning my first home, or at least some portion of the front porch, in partnership with the bank which owned the rest and my first born.
With in a couple of years God called me out of full-time employment into full-time, faith supported, inner city mission work. That mission work quickly took shape around a thesis that work is a vital human need, not merely to pay the bills, but to discover who we are. The poor are robbed of this experience through minimum wage slavery. I raised funds and put together a woodworking shop so that folks from the street could come and experience the healing effect of crafting furniture. On one occasion one of the participants finished a beautiful hope chest made of cherry. He looked puzzled. When I asked why he said, “My Dad always told me I was a worthless piece of shit, this trunk seems to say otherwise.”
Before long the money that flowed from the evangelical community began to dry up. There were many questions about the effectiveness of such a strategy. “How many people are getting saved?” they would ask. The only answer I had was, “All of them. They are all being saved. Me too.”
That gig folded when the Executive Director declared that work that wasn’t profitable wasn’t meaningful, and by profitable he meant financial viable within the marketplace. I understood the financial pressure that drove this statement, but I also understood the complete failure of the church to understand the very basic human need for work. I still found it strange because our social programs (secular) provide supportive work opportunities for people with intellectual limitations. I toured one once and met the workers who expressed how much they loved their work. When I asked the manager what percentage of the revenue came from their efforts he told me, “only a third.” The other two thirds came from the tax payers.
God then showed me a door that took me out west to work in Alberta. I took the step, hoping that this bigger organization, with it’s deeper pockets, would be more willing and able to develop a program of life skills development through a residential work program. In fact the program was up and running and just needed someone to take the helm. I won the position and went to work, only to find out that they too had a very narrow view of work. In fact their view of poverty was simply materialistic. Let’s get these people a job and a roof over their head, and we will have conquered homelessness. That program was folded, and I was offered a different position, but by then I was beginning to understand that the evangelical perspective views those poor people with such contempt that they mission was really to make them just like us. I opted out. I was also ushered out, by a phone call from my wife that my son’s long illness would snuff out his life that evening, and that I should fly home on the first available flight. I did, and he didn’t. Marky, my beloved special needs son, lived on by the thinnest of margins. Needless to say I knew my Alberta days were done.
The next couple of months were hell, but even in the midst of it we could hear God calling us away. We sold our home in the city and wandered out to the country and bought a 7 acre piece of bush, with a river running through it. We knew without a moments hesitation that God wanted us to buy the place and establish a spiritual retreat for the poor. Today a year later we are barely hanging on to that vision. We’ve had no income for a year, our retirement savings are drying up, and our business plan of running a B&B for poor people has very limited revenue potential. These days I wake up in depression and doubt, and I fight my way into the light, using only my imagination. I imagine building a woodworking studio where together with our guest we will learn to transfer the beauty within us, into the wood that we fashion into useful, functional and wonderful art. I imagine, writers coming to write, musicians coming to push back the ugly and children and dogs dancing in the woods. I imagine the fellowship at the table, and the art of cooking, and the fire side chats, sharing stories that have been ignored for too long. It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done, holding onto this vision.
One of the effects of burden of adversity is that it forces you to examine your payload. If I am to carry this vision what things will I have to let go of in order to pull it off. The examination process has quickly revealed that the burden, and often the barrier, is the religious constructs of our culture. It has been a ruthless process and lonely to boot. When you are hanging onto your dream in one hand and a bunch of stuff that you were just told was really important in the other–what then? I have listened to the atheists Hitch, Harris and some others (all really smart) and all they can say is that they don’t believe in anything they can’t prove. I wonder though, does not believing in God render him unreal? Does it matter if I can’t get my head around the inerrancy of the Bible, or the Flood, or Creation? Does what I think really have any impact on what is?
I know I’m wandering off my theme of God calling, but the point I’m trying to make is that sometimes, or maybe all the time, God calls us to the very edge of our faith. He calls us way out past the comfort and safety of our denomination, it’s doctrines, and theological constructs. So now I find myself hanging on by a fingernail. The arguments of Harris and Hitchens, that bad theology leads to war and oppression, makes more sense than Darby’s brilliant explanation of God’s plan. It is dispensationalism that has America sending billions meddling in the Middle East in order to expedite the end of time. Today I am at the very edge of my faith, having set down all but the notion that the Designer knows and loves me (my last fingernail on the cliff) and still he calls me to that dream of helping people discover who he designed them to be.
Great Designer have mercy on me.
Jerry L Martin January 16, 2013
Wayne, your spiritual journey is fascinating — and harrowing. You are
coping with two issues that face us all, discernment and action.
Discernment is difficult because divine prompts are always in the midst of a
cloud of motives, and it is not easy to sort them out. You have had to face
that challenge at every step of the way. Then there are all the practical
problems. Life is lived on the ground. Reality is obstinate. God will be
our partner, but we have to do the heavy lifting. We cannot jump off cliffs
and expect God to save us. Even Jesus, when challenged by Satan, refused
such a test. All the best to you, my friend.
Hayden December 30, 2012
Just wanted to say that this is a great site. Admittedly, the only reason I can believe what I read in your writings is that you were an agnostic when you first heard God’s voice. The fact that you are clearly an intelligent man doesn’t hurt either. As for my experience with God, I have never heard His voice, felt his presence, or anything like that. That being said, by speaking with others and hearing about things quite clearly supernatural, I am more or less convinced that He is there. There are always those annoying, nagging doubts, though, telling me that I am wrong and that none of it is true. I am a philosophy student myself, and naturally look to arguments for His existence to confirm my beliefs. While I find some arguments convincing, it’s hard to accept them when, as you say, they get shot down in Philosophy 101. I find this site encouraging, but at the same time wonder if you’re not mistaken. I am not questioning your sincerity, and I’m sure if something like this were to happen to me I would be completely persuaded as well. I guess my comment can be tied up in a simple, sincere question: Is this for real?
Thank you very much for the website and good luck with the rest of the book.
Jerry L Martin January 1, 2013
Hayden, this is a really good, solid, right-to-the-heart-of-the-matter comment: Is this for real? Well, yes, it is. Which is not to say that it is obvious that it is the real deal, or comes wrapped in a cloak of infallibility or anything like that. It is more like believing what you see with your own eyes, when there is no compelling reason not to believe it. After all, there could be a God, and God could communicate these things to a guy like me. Why would anybody deny that? Only if they are dead set against believing in God. Then they tilt the scale with a heavy thumb, always putting the burden of proof on the believer — as if eyewitnesses had to demonstrate deductively that they saw what they saw. Why shouldn’t the burden of proof fall the other way? Why should I and thousands or millions like me discount our experiences of divine presence? Or maybe neither side has the burden of proof. As William James puts it, you have two options, both reasonable, one of which is open to faith, the other closed.
As I see it, if you are open, you might find something; if you are closed, you never will, even if it is there.
Joseph David Thomas December 13, 2012
Blessing enough will have to do for now. Nothing has happened since our last correspondence. Thank you for your kind words. I still feel fear on my side. Thankfully, firm has not morphed into force. Don’t know the source of my fear. It seems primitive and pre-verbal. Maybe something to do with unresolved issues from a childhood growing up under the abusive excesses of an alcoholic father. Whatever it is, I can’t seem to shake the sense of fear, even with my most rational, intellectual approaches. Oh well, I will just let it go for now. If He has the interest to call me by name, He has the ability to reach me without further violation to my sensitivities. How this happens noetically, I humbly leave up to God.
Jerry L Martin December 17, 2012
Joe, thanks for sharing your current situation with me. You cannot wave a wand and make your fear go away. It looks as if you will have to just live with that a while. God is already there for you. It doesn’t have to be a voice. You have to remain attentive, but it doesn’t help to eagerly look around for signs of God’s presence or love or guidance. About all you can do is to remain open to grace. One exercise might help — it has helped me with fear in particular — and that is “bracketing.” As an exercise, just imagine: what if I didn’t feel fear, how would the world look different? Joe, you are in my heart and in my prayers.
Jenny December 10, 2012
Dr. Martin, I am continually drawn back to your book. When I read it, I feel a sense of relief and recognition.
Even though you have invited me to share my experiences here, as always, I find myself doubting whether they could be of any use to you or your other readers, as God is such a personal God and each person hears Him and grows in Him in their own way and in their own time. I frequently have to remind myself that we are all in community for a good reason.
My experiences of God are often unconventional in terms of traditional Christianity and its doctrines, and yet they are centered around Jesus Christ, both as a fully human, historical man, and as God and Messiah.
This leaves me somewhere in a no man’s land, or perhaps somewhere in the emerging church, as it is sometimes called.
I think this is why I find myself relating to your story.
I first experienced the presence of God when I was a young teen. It was around the same time that I first learned to do what Monsignor Guardini recommends, to “remain calm and trust in God. One should submit to His will and pray for enlightenment.”
This last autumn, when I began more recently to experience the presence of God, I recognized Him instinctively both from those earlier experiences and also in a way that I cannot explain.
However, He was so much with me, and so willing to speak with me, that I actually first believed that maybe I was going to die, and that Jesus was with me in order to prepare me for the transition.
I had no other way to explain why I could feel Him so present, or hear His voice so clearly. For several weeks, I did not admit this fear even to Him. I chided myself for being morbid.
Finally, I couldn’t take it anymore. On day I was walking with Him in the park and the question just burst out of me.
“Am I going to die?” I asked Him.
I am come that you might have life, and that more abundantly, He replied.
I could hear (in a manner of speaking) the twinkle in His eye as He reminded me of His own words. It made me laugh. I thought that was very like Him to answer a specific question with an overarching principle.
As an aside, I relate so much to your experience of pressing Him for answers with both trepidation and hope, and sometimes receiving an answer that shakes one’s faith for a little while- that expands one’s understanding in a way that is uncomfortable at first.
“Then why are You with me like this?” I asked Him, urgently. “What do you want from me?”
You’re Mine and I want you with Me, He replied.
“With” wasn’t exactly the word with that He used; it was more like a concept that contained the meaning of “with”, but also “close to” and “within,” all at the same time.
This answer stunned me. I remember exactly where I was in the park and the scenery that I was looking at when I heard these words in my spirit.
To be honest, I still wrestle with this concept, but it is one that He has repeated, and I have learned to surrender myself to it more and more deeply.
I think these two answers reveal something very close to the heart of God: that He brings forth abundant life and that He created us for and desires intimate and authentic relationship- communion.
Thank you again for sharing your story; I look forward to reading the rest of the chapters in your book.
Jerry L Martin December 20, 2012
Jenny, please lay aside your worries here. Of course, it is valuable to share your thoughts and experiences with us! And no one here should worry about whether they are conventional or not vis-a-vis regard to this or that religious tradition or doctrine. That is not what we are about here. You are telling a spiritually authentic story. That’s what matters.
Several things in your story struck me. First, you recognized God’s presence because of an earlier experience and also “in a way I cannot explain.” Recognizing God’s presence or guidance or love is often so subtle that you can’t even say exactly how you knew it. Sometimes you just do. Second, you were honest with God, not at first but eventually, about your worry that you were going to die. That is exactly the way you have to relate to God. You’ve just got to lay it out, whatever you think or feel or do. You have to relate with full-frontal honesty. Finally, when you ask, “What do you want from me?”, the answer is surprisingly simple, I want you with/close to/within Me. Sometimes God wants us to do something specific, even something quite difficult, but the context even of that is what you call “intimate and authentic relationship-communion.” It is good to have you as a companion on this journey.
Joseph David Thomas October 20, 2012
I found you through Jessica Cortes’ Maven Profile. Jessica is an amazing talent, incandescently beautiful, and spiritually connected in a most authentic manner. You can view her profile at: https://www.maven.co/maven/190562
I only had that experience once of what I call God’s voice speaking to me in my inner ear. It was the most uncanny experience of my life. I simply heard an inner voice gently but firmly call my name, “Joe”. I can’t get away from the impression it has made on me. But instead of being open and pure to the experience like you, I have been hiding and trying to cover my ears with mental fig leaves. I haven’t answered that inner voice yet–too afraid, too burdened with my own sense of unworthiness and impureness.
I have only read chapter one so far, so I don’t want to comment overly much at this stage. I applaud your readers above who have commented with such sensitivity and intelligence.
Your experience reminds me of C.S. Lewis and his life-changing encounter with Joy.
Jerry L Martin November 28, 2012
Thanks so much for sharing your experience. That moment may be the most important event in your life.
I would make several suggestions. First, you should reenact the voice imaginatively, explore it, try to discern its meaning. “Gently but firmly” calling your name, “Joe,” could be an expression of love, or a call to service, or a warning, or a reminder of who you are, or … well, only you can explore this. Second, as you already know, you should try to open yourself to the experience. Relish it, try to live in terms of it. We are all unworthy, impure – that has nothing to do with your relation to God. In the course of my prayers, I was told, “In a sense, it is only sinners I love.” I have also been told not to “wallow in guilt” – that just distances you from God. Third, this may be the only time God will have occasion to communicate with you orally.
Having God speak to you is not a goal; if someone does not hear the divine voice, that is not a failure. The only requirement is that you listen, and take it to heart, when God does have occasion to speak – or to communicate with you in some other way. If you pray, you may well get an inner sense of what God wants you to do. Pay attention to signs, such as significant coincidences, what Jung called synchronicities, or God’s putting people, opportunities, and problems in your path. Right now the one thing you know is that God has taken an interest in you. That is blessing enough.
Don Hogg September 16, 2012
God is speaking to you and you need to listen carefully and attentively. I know God answers prayer, not always immediately or verbally, but in some way or another.
Years ago I was doing a project for our church and needed some help that my wife who was with me could not provide so as we sat for lunch I prayed a specific prayer for the help I needed. Within 20 minutes God sent a man who asked me if I needed help with a specific project. I answered him with an affirmative, he helped me with the project. He had no way of knowing I needed this help had he not been sent by God. After we completed this project I thanked him and he walked away. I had never seen this person before and have never seen him again.
Good luck on finishing the book.