Sunday, September 6, 2020

Spiritual Journey: The Great Blessing: Attaining God-Consciousness

The Spiritual journey continues. Last week we talked about the moment of apotheosis, where we realize our identity as Christians, and it connects not only in the mind, but connects from the mind to the heart, and we begin to really feel that we are Christians. Today we consider the next step of the saga , which is really one of the great climax moments of the journey. We’ve been on this spiritual journey for a while now. And we come to the moment of the great blessing.

We finally, finally, finally go from being a Christian who yes knows our identity, but struggles to have communion with God, to a Christian who experiences daily God-consciousness.

What do we mean when we talk about God consciousness? Well, the scriptures refer to this in several different ways. Sometimes it’s called “life in the Spirit.” As Christians we have Jesus as our savior, God as our Father, and the Holy Spirit within us. And you could say that living in God-consciousness is to live with our mind and heart actively connected to the Holy Spirit within. And then we know that the Holy Spirit is connected to Jesus, and Jesus is connected to the father. You could say that the Holy Spirit is our plug in, we’re plugged into the Holy Spirit who is plugged into Jesus who is plugged into the Father. So God-consciousness is having an active mindset connected to the Holy Spirit.

1st Corinthians 2:16 says, “But we have been given Christ’s way of thinking.” And that is another way that God consciousness is referred to in the scriptures. It’s referred to as “the mind of Christ.”

So what does this mind of Christ look like? Well we get an excellent description of it, famously in Philippians 2:5-11 which says, “Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus,[a] 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped,[b] 7 but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. 9 Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” -Philippians 2:5-11

An astounding declaration is made here, it says in verse 5 right at the beginning, have this mind in yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus. You could pass over that but stop there. It says as a follower of Jesus, this mind of Christ is yours already. Wow.

God consciousness. Wow. Let me explain it this way. We all operate on three basic instincts of life. We operate from our security instinct, our social instinct and our sexual instinct. This is basic to all people. We seek food, shelter, work, protection and so on. That is our security instinct. Basic needs of life. We also have a powerful social instinct, we are drawn to have a family, to have children, to develop friendships with others, to be around other people. Very powerful, and of course we have our sexual instinct that powerful desire to meet someone of the opposite sex, get married, and be romantically involved. Security, social and sexual instinct.

All humans operate that way. But God-consciousness is the 4th dimension of existence. When we begin to operate based on a whole new 4th instinct, the instinct to serve God. And this instinct becomes the most powerful instinct for a Christian.

If you are truly a Christian, you know in your heart, that you would rather die than turn away from Jesus. If someone put a gun to my head, and said, are you a Christian? If you say no I’ll let you go. I would have to say yes, because Jesus is my savior and I can’t deny Him. Jesus is greater than my security instinct, and my social instinct. If I have a group of friends, who mock my faith in Jesus and practice sinful things, I may love those people very much, but I love Jesus more, and I will leave that group before they get in the way of my walk with God. Same thing with the sexual instinct. I’ve had many possibilities of relationships, but those women were not Christians, they were not interested in Jesus, and I know they wouldn’t want to join my church, so even though I had the chance at romance, I declined it. Because this 4th dimension of existence, God consciousness, the instinct to serve the God that made me, is greater than all 3 of those main instincts of life.

But here’s the thing about God-consciousness: It doesn’t come at first as a Christian. We start to follow Jesus and we struggle at first, for the first few years, or however long, to develop prayer times in the morning and at night, over meals. We struggle to develop times of reading the Bible, and watching Christian sermons on YouTube and so on. But as we fight those battles to engage in true relationship with God, we see our connection to God begin to blossom and grow like a beautiful growing garden. And of course week by week we go out there and pull out weeds, we water it carefully each day, we protect it from animals and birds. And slowly it grows up and becomes more and more beautiful.

Eventually we reach that point of apotheosis where we realize deep within our identity in Christ. And the journey continues. And eventually we reach this time where we begin to sense God’s presence. We begin to be actively guided by the Holy Spirit within us. We have gut feelings about dangerous situations. We stop and realize God’s loving presence is here and now with us. And we’re amazed and brought to tears by his love. Our prayer life grows beyond a few minutes to an hour a day or more. We read that bible a half hour a day, we watch YouTube sermons and listen to audio bibles. And slowly but surely we begin to actively experience God consciousness, the mind of Christ within us. This is the great blessing, the ultimate blessing, to begin to really live like Jesus.

We become bold. We share the gospel actively. We delight in God. We have an intuitive response in our minds to situations we didn’t use to be able to handle. We realize that God is doing in us, what we could never do ourselves. We have God-consciousness. We now operate from the great blessing of the mind of Christ. And we grow in the mind of Christ, to experience more and more God-consciousness until it’s the new normal for our lives. Isn’t that beautiful? So keep seeking God actively, fighting for an intimate relationship with Him and soon you’ll find yourself operating from God-consciousness, the ultimate blessing.