contemplative monk : Intentional Spirituality Transforms

Confessions of a Christian Mystic

Flying leaf. Margot Gabel via Compfight

“A mystic—one who beholds God and in so doing is filled with God’s glory and is fully alive.” ~Kevin Johnson

Are You Different?

Are you out of step with the rest of the world?

O.K. I’m coming out of my prayer closet. I’m different, and I’ve got to say, it’s awesome!

I’m not sure when it finally dawned on me. I’m pretty hard headed after all.

Maybe it was while I was trying to be the ‘super Charismatic’? Or maybe a good Baptist, Episcopalian, Plymouth Brethern, Messianic, Methodist, and the list goes on.

You get the picture right? It dawned on me a million times, but I ignored it and kept trying to fit in over and over again.

And it didn’t work. I couldn’t fit in. And the wild thing is, it wasn’t anything I was doing wrong.

Have You Noticed?

Have you ever noticed the weird thing about how every ‘church group’ has their own insider’s ‘code language’. It’s what sets you apart as being ‘one of the gang’. You belong, and everybody else is outside. It doesn’t go well for the Mystic though. We keep saying startling things outside the box.

Then there’s the more spiritually minded groups. Their rite of passage is that you’ve got to get into a ‘certain state’, and then you’ve got to express it properly, that is, to belong. Maybe it’s shaking, falling down, or sitting ‘stone cold silent’ with an occasional ‘Amen’. It’s learn response. Shakers and Quakers got their names for a reason. Mystics however, don’t do responses well. We dance to our own rhythm.

I was leading worship one evening, when the presence of God came in, and one of the ladies began crossing herself over and over again. I thought it was pretty cool because we had another person, who would shake very time they felt God. While this was going on, I had to lean against a wall because I was continually passing out, and hey, I was the one leading the service. LOL Has God got a sense of humor.

Who’s Responding to Who?

I’ve learned that response is usually caught rather than taught, and Mystics are generally so tuned in, we’re oblivious to everything else, and when we aren’t, we don’t tick the response box. We do the unexpected. That’s why I love St Francis so much. He expressed his radical faith with such freedom, joy and abandonment. Control freaks abhor this, and I understand, but it’s how we’re wired as human beings.

But then again, Seers, Prophets and Sages have never fit in. We generally speak from the outside in. It’s why

Mystics are the ‘spiritual nerds’ of the Body of Christ

We’re usually Seers, Prophets, Sages, Intercessors, and Healers. Some of us are worship leaders. Just listen to David Crowder.

We don’t fit the norm, and we never will, no matter how hard we might try to. And here’s the reason.

We march to the beat of a different drum. We’re hardwired differently, and that’s O.K.

We see and experience things most other people never will see or understand. And because of it, we’re seriously out of step with the status quo.

How Are You Wired?

Here’s an example:  If I’d say to you, “The most important thing you can do, is to walk in the Spirit.”

  1. You might think of a list of things you’ve got to do,
  2. Or a longer list of things not to do.
  3. You might think of practices, devotions, or prayers that would really help.
  4. You might think that first, you need to become a Missionary, or a Preacher, or a Priest.
  5. Maybe even a Monk or a Nun…to really get your spiritual mojo working.
  6. Hey, at least Bible College or Seminary should get you there.
  7. You know a good fast would help you too.

For the Mystic, walking in the Spirit simply means, I now walk in the Spirit and we do it. We don’t analyze it, or add steps to get there. Mystics see things intuitively from the ‘get go.’ We consciously and intentionally move into the experience with God. And because Jesus’ finished work allows us, we go in.

Here’s another clue that this might be you:

Here’s The Thing

Most Believers will go to a great service. They’re thrilled with the presence of God being poured out, and that’s awesome. But for us Mystics, getting alone with God is the thing. Our high point is before the meeting. We go to services to serve, and if we’re made to sit, we get bored outta our gourd.

It’s like this: Where do you get your energy from? What stokes you? Being around other people? or being alone?

Regardless, be comforted in the fact that, your individual gifting works in any Church structure, because ‘your solace, is in solitude.’ It’s about having a real love affair with God rather than some spiritual mumbo jumbo.

The Mystic revels in contemplation and meditation. Why? Because these are doorway practices, the thresholds we cross.

Do you realize that walking with God in the cool of the day is more than a beautiful image? It’s real, it’s possible,and it’s here and it’s now for you.

Hey, give a Mystic a Scripture and he’s gone. She’ll jump in and plumb the depths of God. The Mystic will dive into the awesome, incredible, inexplicable, mystery of God before you can blink an eye.

Never Before

There’s something incredible we as Mystics have today, something that no other generation has ever had. Did you ever wonder why ancient mystical writings are so obscure and seriously difficult to read and comprehend?

Today we have language and words to express our interior life with a clarity no other generation has ever had.

Psychology, psychotherapy, and the brain sciences have given us interior language, and opened up whole new ways to express ourselves.

Now, regardless of who you are, everyone of us has the need to get alone with God, and soak in his presence.

Take A Moment

Take a moment and just breathe. Focus on your breath. Now, realize that breath and spirit are one in the same. You have the ability to move out of your head, and out of your body, into your spirit. Not completely mind you, but to walk in the Spirit, first you’ve got to remember how to ‘get in the spirit.’

Now breathe in and breathe out in a ‘breath prayer’. Try it. Silently breathe in and breathe out saying Jesus. Take a few moments. What do you feel? or better yet, what are you experiencing?  Take your time and don’t try to force anything. Just be still and breathe. Enter your spirit.

“Be still and know that I am God.”

As you breathe, you might notice there’s a passive awareness or effortless concentration as you rest in God. Everything is in His hands, as we let go and trust Him to handle it.

Come close to God and He will come close to you.

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