By David Ramos
They raised their hands, they danced in circles, they cried on the altar in utter abandon, they lay prostrate on the floor for what seemed like an hour, who are these people? Well, they are the members of my church. Now this isn’t anything new for me, I grew up in charismatic Pentecostal circles where this was the order of the day, however, what impressed me was how early in the service this was happening. This wasn’t the case of Pedro beating the timbales faster, or brother Leroy grooving on the organ in an attempt to create ecstatic frenzy. On the contrary, these men and women—and some children as well—were all so very eager to worship God and were so caught up in focus that they seemed oblivious to anyone around them. I marveled at the passion and the beauty of it all. While I was praising God, I felt a plethora of emotions; I felt like crying, I felt like laughing, I felt conviction, I felt inspired and I felt awe. Such were the variety of sheer emotions I experienced that it felt like waves of glory gently immersing me. I realized that as a minister of this house, I am in such a different space and now I have front row seats to this phenomenological reality. As an evangelical Christian I want to say truly God can make God’s presence known; as a Pentecostal I want to say that God breaks into the space and time continuum where we can experience pockets and/or moments of transcendence. No matter what our tradition is, it would behoove us to take out time to pray, meditate, linger, explore, and experience God, as we understand God. Hurray for Anselm, he got it right; truly it is faith seeking understanding.
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