How do we get trained to see God’s presence?

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 12,122
    Rev. Rock Schuler discusses how to see God’s presence.

    Rock Schuler

    Rock Schuler is the Rector (Pastor) of St. John’s Episcopal Church in Olney, Maryland. He has served as an ordained minister of the Episcopal Church since 1990 after studying for the priesthood at Seabury-Western Theological Seminary in Evanston, Illinois. He was awarded a Doctorate of Ministry in Congregational Development in 2002. In the course of his ministry, Rock has served on an Indian Reservation, in rural Wyoming, and in major suburban areas. In addition to pastoring the people of his congregation, he has been involved in community service projects to serve the homeless, refugees, and the addicted. He’s also been involved in international outreach projects in Latin America and Africa. Rock’s spiritual roots lie in the early Christian Church, in Native American spirituality, in the liturgical worship and traditions of the Episcopal Church, and most especially in his own personal relationship with the living Lord Jesus Christ. He appreciates the mystery and mysticism of the Christian faith while offering thanks for a lifelong and joyous love of Jesus. Rock, born in 1965, is from Wyoming, where he served his first two churches. He is married to Jennifer, whom he met while serving a parish outside of Philadelphia, and has two beautiful daughters, Leia and Rebecca. Rock is into science fiction and fantasy (especially "Battlestar Galactica," "Star Trek," "Lost," and "The Lord of the Rings"), movies, reading, kayaking/canoeing, hiking, and running.

    How do we get trained to see God s presence inside us and around us?

    Rock Schuler: In my tradition, the Episcopal tradition of the Christian Church, we are what we call a sacramental church. That means that we believe that God comes to us through the things of creation, through the people of creation. That God uses creation to do miraculous things on our behalf to show us great wonders.

    I know that I often find God s presence in the midst of nature, hiking out in the mountains, on a river kayaking; these are places where nature reveals to me the very presence of God. One of the ways we can find God then in our daily existence is to ask God open our eyes to where his presence is throughout his creations and there are particular practices that we can undertake that will help us to see God s presence.

    When we structure our day, prayerfully, we cannot help but enter into the presence of God. We can do things like say grace that meals. We can offer bed time prayers with our children. We can say our morning devotion when we rise in the morning with our spouse before breakfast. There are enumerable ways in which we can structure our lives prayerfully so that we are enabled to see God more vividly around us.

    Ancient Celtic Christians had a practice of praying for virtually everything they did. They were praying all the time in every circumstance with every task. This kind of constant prayer, this immersion in prayer is the way that we begin to find God in our everyday occurrences and circumstances