“Reaching to The God of Love” Testimony from LWillows…we love Him because he first loved us. 1 John 4:19

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Reaching to the Love of God

“And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son.” 1 John 5

Recently I experienced a fervent increase in prayer for the experience of God’s Love in my heart. I prayed that my faith increase. Reading and diving deeper into scripture provided a rich ground for my appeals.

I have been taught that the great Intercessor, The Holy Spirit would guide my prayers, even cleanse the veil of tears that clouded my own unknowing. My great Shepherd, Christ Jesus is always listening from His Throne upon the Altar next to The Father.

Ephesians 6:1
With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints.

With my arms reaching up and hands extended, fingers themselves pointed towards an invisible yet tangible one that I sensed could see their tips,  I prayed. With my own senses and mortal eyes and mind, I could not fathom the gaze of the loving eyes that held a gaze upon me as I worded my prayer.

“Father, I know that you are there. By the power of your Spirit, help me to know your Love. I need You, only You and nothing more. My entire existence depends only on You. Anything other than You can and will fall away, shift, fail, lose and die. You alone are Life. I can rely on nothing but you…

My own heart sees and knows nothing and nothing. Apart from You, I am nothing. Help me to know you. Help me to see You and to feel you in my heart. Open my eyes to the depth of You. Lead me to Your Love.

Father, in this hour I long to know you and meet with Your Love. I hold open my arms, my hands outstretched waiting for you. This is an hour of urgent and deepest need for you and nothing apart from you. I am waiting, Father. Lord Jesus, I bid your Love.”

It was nighttime. I waiting in a sustained stillness. I lay in a darkness that felt safe with my arms lifted in a cupped reach. My heart wept as I persisted in prayer. I appealed like a child speaking to the one that had made a promise. I believed completely in My Father’s Promise. I don’t think that I had ever before in my life had so much belief that my Father would keep his promise or that he saw and heard me as vividly calling than in these waiting moments.

As I waited in anticipation, I could only hear my breath and feel the flush of my own river of tears. Then in a soft shift, I felt my nostrils open and the air around me open as if I were in a new atmosphere. I began to breathe in with an experience unknown to me.

I noticed that my chest was rising and falling with a new fullness as if something other than me were drawing breath in and out from a source beyond me. Air which felt  rarified and magnified by something other than oxygen seemed to ventilate itself into me. I was the recipient.

Job 27:3 For as long as life is in me, And the breath of God is in my nostrils.

Softly, I did not feel like the “Breather”. It felt like I was being breathed by Spirit or perhaps Love. I was gently overcome by peace. “It” as breath or air,  seemed able to sweep into my being. I felt “lifted” as if weightless and carried yet still in the same place where I lay. My heart and chest felt opened and I experienced a sense of “parting” down the center where the Breath seemed to circulate and then turn back to its source which was far beyond to the One that I had prayed to. I kept gazing towards The Lord during it all.

 Isaiah 42.5 “Thus says God the LORD, Who created the heavens and stretched them out, Who spread out the earth and its offspring, Who gives breath to the people on it And spirit to those who walk in it.”

I did not know how long this lasted at the time. I felt a sense of timelessness and expansiveness. I experienced complete Peace unlike any other I ever have known. I remember noticing afterward that it was not a “feeling”.  There were no feelings to this experience, it transcended feeling and emotion. It was not something that could come and go or rise and fall as we experience with our mortal heart or senses. This Peace was far beyond and something of an eternal nature.

After an unknown amount of time, The Breathe and Breathing receded like a gentle flow motioning itself back to where it came from. I recall the difference between my own breathing as it returned. It was so limited by comparison. But the gift of this blessing remained.

My first thoughts were of gratitude. I also felt great joy. I thought about scripture and much went through my heart about The Promises of God. It is all true, I thought!  I have felt The Word as an experience of living Breath.  I experienced Christ, who was God, “Logos” (Word) Jesus and One with God as Love and the answer to my Prayer. The Living Spirit is the Word of God, again His word is God-Breathed. I asked to Know Love.

Lord Jesus is known by The Holy Spirit, which is referred to in scripture as Ruah, the Hebrew word from wind or breath. The Holy Breath had lifted and infused my mortal heart and frame. God is Triune, The Father, the Son, and The Holy Spirit. I am yet learning and assimilating this experience. Answers surely do not come from a part of me that could write or analyze.  I will learn from what is Holy, from Prayer and from Scripture.

Genesis 2:7 Then the Lord God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature.

Acts 17:25 “nor is He served by human hands, as though He needed anything, since
He Himself gives to all people life and breath and all things.”

I had asked to know the Love of Christ Jesus. The answer came as I was given His Peace by the Power of His Holy Spirit. His Presence was undeniable. His Love was not to be questioned. We question God. We do not understand why there is suffering. We do not see past our circumstances. In the weeks afterward, life lessons came forward but the richness of the experience is still to unfold.

I did see that it was my own veiled heart that puts the question marks there. I was immersed in what divided me from His Love and had not fully given up to Him. You might say that we look to revive ourselves of the Lord’s good Waters from the wrong well. We go to the ones that we have gone to a hundred times before and they are dry but familiar. We go to the ones that are outside of ourselves, that we believe can offer peace and comfort from the world. We go to what might fill our heart’s thirst for a day or a night and it may seem like good religion but it still is not God. It is not His True Spirit, not His One Eternal and  Sovereign Loved that has known us from The Beginning. There is only One Lord that is Our Great Shepherd he does not recede.

The next morning I soaked in the verse from
1 John 4:19 “We love him because he loved us first”.

My Prayer was answered. All came in a beautiful windfall. I asked to be loved but I already was. I had been reversing the order. Like a child, or as the Bible describes us- I had still kept part of my “orphan” mentality. I saw myself as “not unified with Him nor basking in His Love. I was asking “With Him” yet I have received Grace. I was sanctified and justified by Faith. He already Loved me. I was the one asking the wrong question. I was the one whose “face” was seeing a distortion in the mirror.

1 Corinthians 13:12 “For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.”

He loved me first. Jesus lived a sinless and sacrificial life for me, he suffered and bore all the sins of mankind on the cross and was resurrected so that I could be born into His Grace and know a Love as great as His, as great as His Father’s Love for HIm.

1 John 3:1
See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him.

John 15:9
“As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love.

And so I remain.
It has been many days since that night of prayer and the experience of “being breathed”. But my heart is altered. I have experienced that being Loved by The Lord causes us to Love and that Love then deepens and motions forwards.

That Light, shining brightly will be convicting, humbling and offer the Power of The Holy Spirit to help me, all to transform. It will also provide the dearest of comfort as I dwell in the Love of my Great Shepherd, Lord Jesus. With a breath and a prayer, hearts can be stilled so that we hear His Voice. With prayer and His prompting and the intercession of The Holy Spirit, each daily walk can be led by Love because He has Loved us all, still Loves and remains with us in resurrected Power.

Lord, help us all to remain in your steadfast love. Lead us by your gentle and sweet calling in all nights. Let your Light Shine before us. Be the breath of Spirit that causes us live according to your will.

© 2018 Linda Willows

Prayer calls us…can we learn to pursue with relentless love?

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Prayer is the most powerful thing that we can learn to do with our hearts. When we Pray we are trusting that God, who Loves us, is listening, able to understand all of our experiences and longings and also has the Wisdom and Power to Intervene, Help, Heal and led us into the experience of His Presence….

Please know, I am not an authority, nor a teacher… only one on a long an joyful journey in prayer. I share only wishing to inspire you to seek further and feel my own joy.

In Prayer we pursue that which is Holy. We long to come alongside the Presence of Love Itself. When we do that, we experience the Relentless Love of God for us. Our response is to choose to turn towards Him and respond to His call to Awakening to a New Birth or to fall back into the ‘familiar’ until our hearts are touched once again.

When we know how to pray…we begin Prayer with Worship. We are humbled by awe at The Infinite Love that The Lord has for us; our hearts fill with gratitude, wonder and we bow in our heart’s reach as we aspire to know and whisper our own words to The One That Created and has Known us from the beginning of Time.

We must come to acknowledge that by our own Power, we can do no thing. The Power of God is Sovereign in the seen and the unseen worlds in ways that we cannot even begin to fathom. This Eternal is the source of Creation and formed us in “His” amazing image with purpose, plan and design. With our mortal minds and transient feelings, we do not have the tools to perceive God. We can only begin to know God through His Spirit, which described in the Bible. The following are two of my favorite quotations of Christ Jesus.

1 Corinthians 3:16

Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?

Ephesians 3:17

so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love…

In Prayer we seek to commune with God. We feel called by something greater, larger and unfathomable by our minds, perhaps only perceived by our Hearts. We respond by calling back, calling out and deeply desiring to hear, feel and know God.

We must “Pursue Love Relentlessly’

cropped-oflower182578djordjina-ciric-copy.jpgIt is difficult to persuade anyone against the promise of power and peace. Life though, is the greatest Teacher– for we are not Alone, nor created Alone. We have been created by God.

Ultimately there is no quick fix to alter our circumstances or ‘patch in’ a positive to our emotions on top of something unhealed or un-forgiven. God finds us where we are and and is able to embrace all, the whole of us in a way that is almost unfathomable to our mortal hearts. We are human; imperfect, fallible. When we seek the love of our Maker, seek reunion with That which formed our Being in innermost core of Creation-we begin a journey which ends in a Birth and a death. We die, or find degrees of surrender of the ‘gross’, all that we carry which is earthbound and “leads to death”….

Galatians 2:20 – I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.

and embrace The One That God, ordained by the Holiest of Holy’s where we find Grace. 

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photograph by Katherine Watson

Prayer and The Holy Trinity

I found an extremely erudite and Biblical exposition on this on the my own Church web site. Please know that I am not a scholar, just a humble poet and devoted member of the Church. There are many more worthy articles found there!! Alexandria Presbyterian Church
I remember that in learning to pray according to Biblical Word, there were always many questions about “who” in the Trinity I would pray to. Could I pray directly to the Godhead of the Trinity? What was the role of The Holy Spirit? May I speak directly to Christ Jesus? Understanding and delighting in the direct ability to approach Deity in prayer, worship and personal relationship became a starting point and a journey that grew each and every part of my being, life, relationships and spirit In Him over the years. It is that which I value most in life.

The followed list of affirming Christian belief is taken from my Church’s website Alexandria Presbyterian Church which includes many links to more detailed information on every subject that I would want to bring up further on all things related to prayer, worship, Christianity and deeper subjects.

upon my heart rests this prayer:

“Pursue Love Relentlessly”

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The Sermons and Fellowship Group directly inspired my Prayer life and cause a surge forward that awes me to tears of gratitude and happiness. Life, Purpose and Perspective have altered for me 360 degrees in the last 5, is it 6 years? Time is flying by…

I can only offer my testimony that Prayer, and its fruit-the molding of one’s heart into a vessel for the Love of God, It’s Joy and the desire to out-pour His Spirit and Being in life and community with all Life is an astounding journey.

The Holy Trinity in The Westminster Confession of Faith


  • The Bible is the inspired and inerrant Word of God, the only infallible rule of faith and practice.
  • There is one God, eternal and self-existing in three persons (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) who are to be equally loved, honored, and adored.
  • All mankind participated in Adam’s fall from his original sinless state and is thus lost in sin and totally helpless.
  • The Sovereign God, for no other reason than His own unfathomable love and mercy, has chosen lost sinners from every nation to be redeemed by the quickening power of the Holy Spirit and through the atoning death and resurrection of His son, Jesus Christ.
  • Those sinners whom the Spirit quickens, come to believe in Christ as Savior by the Word of God, are born again, become sons of God, and will persevere to the end.
  • Justification is by faith and through it the undeserving sinner is clothed with the righteousness of Christ.
  • The goal of God’s salvation in the life of the Christian is holiness, good works, and service for the glory of God.
  • At death the Christian’s soul passes immediately into the presence of God and the unbeliever’s soul is eternally separated from God unto condemnation.
  • Baptism is a sign of God’s covenant and is properly administered to children of believers in their infancy as well as to those who come as adults to trust in Christ.
  • Jesus Christ will return to earth, visibly and bodily, at a time when He is not expected, to consummate history and the eternal plan of God.

Alexandria Presbyterian Church statement of Belief in concordance with The Holy Bible.

I pray that all be blessed by God, that their heart know Him and lives be touched by His Love, find Unity among-st us all and Mercy now and forever.
Amen

© 2017 Linda A Willows