At certain times, we feel the presence of God very tangibly and our whole life seems touched by His presence. At other times, God seems to be distant or even absent. We don’t feel His presence in the same way as we did—maybe not even at all.
Why is God hiding? Is it normal? Is it because we have done something wrong?
I believe the answer lies in understanding the ways of God more fully and deeply—and one of His ways is that God lives with us both in hiddenness and manifestation. And we are in the process of learning the beauty of both.
Manifestation describes the times when you feel God’s presence and His touch upon your life in a very immediate way. He is just there! It’s wonderful and effortless.
In hiddenness, God is equally present with you, it’s just that you don’t experience His presence in the same way. And if you don’t understand the beauty of hiddenness, you can feel disoriented and discouraged.
Manifestation is a time of blessing. Hiddenness is a time of building.
Hiddenness is about possessing the things of God through His Word by faith. It’s our practice ground for learning the power of our promises and His unchanging nature towards us. God peels away all the external paraphernalia of our lives and asks us to trust Him. In that place, we have the opportunity to believe that we have peace (or joy, or hope) in Him because there are no emotions to support us.
Confidence in who God is for us, in us and through us is cultivated in hiddenness. When we are trained by its wisdom, hiddenness creates a sure and certain refuge in the Lord. The enemy cannot easily invade our lives with panic and doubt.
Regardless of our emotions, in hiddenness, we learn to be at rest, assured that God is just as fully present to our faith as He is on the days when He is present to our feelings.
He promised to be with us always—and He always keeps His promises.
When God is fully manifest, it’s about experiencing Him. It’s hard to pay attention to anything else, because we are wonderfully overwhelmed with His majesty and His glory.
Times of hiddenness allow us to process deep truth, free of distraction. Job 28:20-21a says,
“From where then does wisdom come? And where is the place of understanding? It is hidden from the eyes of all living.”
When I first knew the Lord, I lived in several years of His continual, manifest presence. And when those days ended, I thought I had done something terribly wrong and I fell into despair.
The kind words of a stranger in a coffee shop on a rainy day in the U.K. saved my sanity—and opened up the beautiful relationship of hiddenness. That conversation and what I discovered because of it became my first “Being with God” journal, Hiddenness and Manifestation.
If you ever have, or are currently disoriented because God no longer seems present, be at peace. You are learning different ways to be with God, knowing that it is always His good pleasure to be with you.
PS) If you are interested in learning more about cultivating the presence of God and experiencing His wisdom for your life and others, consider getting a copy of my book, Prophetic Wisdom. It’s currently on sale this month at Brilliant Book House. Click here to order your copy today!