Manifest Presence of the Lord P- 11
"And Moses took the Tabernacle, and pitched it without
camp, afar off from the camp, and called it the Tabernacle
of the Congregation"
"And it came to pass, as Moses entered into the Tabernacle,
the cloudy pillar descended, and stood at the door of the
Tabernacle, and the Lord talked with Moses"
"And the LORD spake unto Moses face to face, as a man
unto his friend" Exodus 33:7a,9,11a.
The "omnipresence" of the Lord speaks of His presence
filling both heaven and earth. He is everywhere at one and
the same time. But within His omnipresence is His personally
revealed "manifest presence."
There are two aspects to His manifest presence. The first
is the Lord appearing to us as a "person" in which
He makes known to us, through one or more of our five physical
senses, a measure of His thoughts or feelings.
The second is the feeling of His presence as an "inner
glow" which comes deep within us. This is a "quickening
presence" which causes us to become keenly aware of the
"My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee
rest" Exodus 33:14.
I usually travel alone, but not alone, because of the companionship
of the presence of God. Last summer, I had meetings in Bangkok
and changed planes in Singapore. We arrived at the Singapore
airport early and a man said he would make sure my luggage
was put on the right plane so I could be free to get something
When we arrived in Bangkok, several other large jets arrived
around the same time. Passengers and luggage were everywhere,
since the airport was small. All the other passengers from
my plane had picked up their luggage, but my suitcases were
not there. I went to the Tai-Airways desk and told them that
apparently my luggage had been lost.
I decided to go to the hotel and wait for them to call when
my luggage was found. Then I felt to go back to the conveyor
one more time to see if it might have come while I was at
the desk. I looked, but found nothing. Almost an hour and
a half had passed and everyone was gone. I thought I must
reconcile myself to the fact that my luggage was lost and
Just as I was about to turn away, I felt the Lord's quickening
presence. It was so strong that it seemed as if the Lord was
standing to my left, by the conveyor belt. I had an inner
sense of calm as I felt the Lord had come to stand with me.
We stood there together, at the conveyor belt. I thought,
if the Lord has come to stand here with me, I should not leave,
so I kept looking at the conveyor belt. This lasted about
fifteen minutes as I stood there, thanking the Lord for His
Just then, my luggage appeared on the belt. It had been mixed
with the luggage of another flight. I was so delighted because
the Lord had come and stood with me so I would not leave.
After I picked up my suitcases, I discovered that the Lord
was no longer there. He came to help me because He knew my
things would come. "My presence shall go with thee, and
I will give thee rest."
"Oh how great is Your goodness, which You have laid
for them that fear You; which You have wrought for
them that trust in You before the sons of men! You
will hide them in the secret of Your presence from
the pride of man: You will keep them secretly in a
pavilion from the strife of tongues" Psalm 31:19-20.
Here, the presence of the Lord is seen as being a shelter
in which we are protected and vindicated concerning that which
others may say or do.
A teacher in the school where I taught was very critical
of my overseas travels. She heard that I was planning to go
to Liberia and asked when I planned to go. When I told her
the first week of June, she responded that this was not the
time to go, and said I should have heard from the Lord.
When I told her that I had heard from the Lord, she declared
that I had not heard, and that I should have had better discernment.
She told me that this was the worse time to go to Liberia
as it rains so much that no one would be able to come to the
When I arrived in Liberia, there was sunshine each day and
a full moon each night. They told me that they had never seen
such beautiful weather during this season. When I returned
home, I was able to tell her that we had a rainless week and
that the presence of the Lord had been with me in an unusual
As a result, her criticism was silenced. When the Lord speaks
to us in His quickening presence, we can depend on what He
One time, the Lord told me to go to France. However, I did
not want to go because the Germans and French were traditional
enemies and my father had fought against France. I said, "Lord,
I do not have money to go to France."
One evening during the summer camp meeting, the speaker said
the Lord had told him to take up an offering for my travels.
The amount of this offering was $580. The price of a return
ticket to France was $552. Then I told the Lord my second
excuse, "Even though I have the fare, I still cannot
go, as I have no contact." A few days later, a pastor
asked me to minister in his Church and told me that he would
like me to meet his friend from France, who was visiting.
After I spoke, this man said, "Have you ever thought
of coming to France?" Just then, a strong presence of
the Lord came, and I knew that I was to go, and made the arrangements
to do so.
When I arrived, I did not feel welcomed as I was German.
In fact, I overheard someone talking about me. Then I said,
"Father, do you hear what they are saying about me?"
When I said this, I felt a strong enveloping presence. It
was the shelter of the presence of God. They still talked,
and I still heard what they said, but now I had a fortress.
After the second morning meeting, I had come to know that
they were not receptive to my ministry, and did not want me
there. I felt very uneasy and told them I would like to go
out for a walk. I had the feeling that they were relieved.
Although it was cold and raining, I went to a park and sat
there shivering. I said, "Father, please let me go home
as they do not want me or the message you gave me." There
was such a presence, but I did not receive anything from the
Lord. Then I went back to my cold hotel room.
Once in my room, I said, "Father, unless you do something
I will find my ministerial grave in France." I thought
of the tens of thousands of white crosses I had seen as I
traveled through Normandy by train.
Early Sunday morning, the Lord woke me up and gave me a message
that had to do with His personal visits to me. I said, "Lord,
they will never receive this." After I spoke for about
ten minutes, I stopped and asked my interpreter to tell the
congregation that someone had an utterance from the Holy Spirit.
"Oh," she said, "we do not do this in France.
This is not our custom." I responded, "Please do
it anyway." She said, "It just is not done like
that." I said, "Sister, the Holy Spirit has an utterance
somewhere in the audience." We stood there arguing while
they wondered what it was all about.
Finally she said, pointing a finger at me, "Brother
says somebody has an utterance from the Spirit and should
give it." A lady stood up and gave a beautiful utterance
in tongues. A man stood up and gave the interpretation. In
the interpretation, God confirmed that He had sent me to France,
that He was giving them His word, that He was seeking to bring
them into a new dimension of experience in God, and that they
should receive the word.
With that, the Spirit of God fell, hands went up and this
large crowd began to shout and praise the Lord. I heard a
voice at the other end of the platform I thought I recognized.
The pastor who had criticized and opposed me had his hands
raised and was shouting praises in French as tears ran down
He came over, threw his arms around me, asked for my forgiveness,
and said "God has sent you to France, tomorrow we have
a special outing for all the Churches, please stay and speak."
This man was the leader of all my future visits, and opened
many areas of France for my ministry. One year, they sent
me to Japan, over the North Pole from Paris, and paid all
It was the presence of the Lord that held me steady, a shelter
to envelop me, protect me, and shield me from their words
until God could break through and turn hostility into friendship
to the glory of God. These experiences in His manifest presence
are real and have a purpose.