Stay In The Know:

How I Met God

I remember the first day I raised my hands to worship God in church. I was so uncomfortable as it was totally out of the norm for me. I felt weird and out of place and believed all eyes were on me. I was in my early teens and the pressure to be cool was on, but after seeing an older teen (Chavalia Dunlap) sing "Holy One" and be moved by God, I wanted that too.

I also wanted to be cool, I wanted to be liked. I wanted to be popular. But, this God experience seemed more like a need. I no longer wanted to just sing or clap. I needed to know what it meant to experience the presence of God in song, in body, and in soul. I needed to be filled and freed simultaneously and to be connected. I was starving spiritually and tired of dry worship and unsatisfied with leaving church feeling empty and disconnected from this big beautiful amazing God. I mean, it was bad enough I couldn't physically see Him and could barely decipher His voice from my own. If I was going to commit, I needed to know I could touch and be touched by Him in a deep way.

So one Sunday morning, I raised my hands, but only chest high. Not high enough to draw attention to myself... Just high enough so that they weren't down by my side. Soon, I quickly dropped my hands as the uncomfortability became too great. Surely, I would be talked about by my peers. Surely they would think I was weird....

For some reason, this didn't stop me and for whatever reason I went home, closed the door, turned out the light. I was intent on having a conversation in worship with God. However, even alone I felt strange as I began to mutter a prayer. Thinking back its so strange to remember that at this time I didn't even pray out loud. Everything between me and God was inside my head, like a secret. My rationale was God can hear my thoughts, right? No one else needed to hear me pray or praise. It made sense at the time, but the truth was I comfortable and I cared more about what people would say rather that how I was making God feel. (I didn't even think God had feelings) My persona, reputation, and people's feelings were idle gods to me. Leaving me unchanged, dry, and religious but not spiritual.

Lord, I thank you, I whispered.

Lord, I love you.

Thank you for my Mom. Thank you for my dad.

Thank you for loving me.

Lord, I don't know what I am doing but I want to know you.

I want to hear you......

I continued in this uncomfortableness until tears started streaming from my eyes, songs began to roll from my lips, and my bedroom became my sanctuary. After what seemed like only a moment, I reluctantly left my bedroom. Truth was I had been in there for at least and hour, but like they say time flies when you're having fun. I felt light, fulfilled and free. As I emerged from my room, I remember being asked by my dad, " Are you okay?" and I replied very peacefully, " Yes sir."

After that indescribable moment. there was no turning back. In church I could no longer just pit and pat my hands. I could no longer sing softly. I had discovered the place that Psalms 91 talked about. The secret one where God wraps His arms around you and hides you from every painful scary thing. The place where you watch weapons form but they can't proper over you. I had met God and He introdueced HImself to me as a gentleman and the Ultimate Father. In our secret place He became Daddy God and I learned that He does in fact speak to us. All I had to do was get over myself and get under Him.

While I don't always understand the mysteries of the Word and I push myself to read consistently, pray , praise and worship through song is where the Word comes alive. It is the most sacred part of my relationship with God... where He rescues me from the ridiculousness that is this world and

my sensitive heart is set free.

Lead Me Back - Morgan Harper Nichols
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