My reflection today centers around our ability to recognize and experience the numinous. Numinous describes the presence of a deity or spirit being. That shouldn’t be so surprising since all of us are spirit beings. The fact that we are made of God is an indication that we have within us the wherewithal to recognize such a presence. You may say that you have never had such an experience and due to that, such a presence is only fictitious. Allow me to use a Star Wars quote that may aid us in grasping this spiritual awareness. The original Star Wars movie had Obi-Wan Kenobi encouraging Luke Skywalker to experience “the force” by “stretching out with his feelings” In other words, do not rely upon what you see with your physical eyes but rather trust that which you cannot see. The apostle Paul indicates in II Corinthian 5:7 that we walk by faith and not by sight.
The word “faith” contains an element of trust, but trust in what or who. Galatians chapter two and verse twenty of the New Testament holds a key element for your consideration as we continue to offer this reflection. The writer of Galatians indicates that we were crucified with Christ Jesus. Paul’s understanding of this idea comes from his awareness that this Christ Jesus was revealed within him Galatians 1:15 - 16. Once this revelation came into view, Paul realized that to have Christ Jesus within him meant that whatever happened to Christ Jesus also happened to each one of us. Once again Paul indicates that he was crucified with Christ nevertheless he is alive and the life he now lives in the flesh, he lives by the faith of the Son of God. The faith “of” the Son of God is very important to consider because it indicates that it is not our faith that we live by, but rather it is Jesus’ faith that matters most.
The “faith” chapter in Scripture is found in Hebrews chapter eleven of the New Testament. The first verse reads, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Allow me to encourage you to take the idea of living by the faith of the Son of God by substituting the name Jesus for the word faith in Hebrews eleven verse one. The first time I did it I was overwhelmed with the truth that surfaced in my thinking. It would read like this, “Now Jesus is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” In other words, Jesus is the visible representation of that which is unseen. Just because it is unseen with our physical eyes doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. Most of the time we cannot see our breath but we believe that our breath is present within us.
This brings us back to our original thought concerning the numinous. Jesus said that he would send the Holy Spirit to be our Comforter. Another name for the Holy Spirit is Paraclete. This word suggests that the Holy Spirit comes alongside to give comfort and solace. The Spirit is always present. Allow me to encourage you, by the faith of the Son of God, that you consider trusting in that which you cannot see and in so doing you will stretch out with your feelings, so to speak, and begin the journey of walking by faith and not by sight. Once you engage this journey and you witness the Numinous presence of the Holy Spirit within, you will grasp a greater awareness of Jesus the Anointed One!