Find Your Spiritual Trysting Place

In my book, The Altar of His Presence, we studied some of the geographical places where altars were built and graced with the Lord’s manifested Presence to those of precious faith. These hallowed sites are known either because of the divine revelations or angelic appearances that supplemented the building of an altar. Mostly for sacrificing, sometimes only as a memorial, altars were named.

 

Moses named his Jehovah Nissi, and Gideon named his the Lord is Peace. Others, like the one built by the leaders of Reuben, Gad, and Manasseh, were not for burnt offering, nor sacrifice, but as a witness and testimony (see Josh. 22:26-27). Altars were made only of earth or unhewn stone on which no iron tool was used and without steps going up to them (see Exod. 20:24-26). With each of them there was neither spectacle nor decoration allowed. The altar was to be plain and simple, for it was the meeting place between God and man and therefore a place of shedding of blood without which there is no remission of sin (see Lev. 17:11; Heb. 9:22). The altar is a place of interaction with the Lord for us only through the offering of an innocent life.

 

From our solar system’s blazing hot sun to the tiniest moon in Jupiter’s orbit and everything in between, God has places. An altar is a place of purpose that conveys this truth—the Lord wants to meet with us. What could be the purpose of human beings having a meeting place with God? For what purpose would God choose the altar as His place to meet with man? Perhaps you have similar questions about the possible alien visitations or odd manifestations found at Stonehenge or Easter Island.

 

Apparently, the early patriarchs found the real answer. Surviving worldwide flood, generations-destroying famine, and the loss of mankind’s righteousness for sin, Noah, Abraham, Moses, David, and Elijah all built altars. Upon these altars these men of faith offered sacrifices to the Lord as an offering of thanksgiving and praise for the Lord’s guidance, protection, sustenance, strength, or blessing. Each one found the altar’ed life as promised in Exodus 30:6.

 

Each altar had one ultimate purpose. That purpose was to create a meeting place with the Lord God Almighty. The Hebrew mind viewed the altar as a place where men and women came to worship. It was the place where the passion for and the movement toward the Lord came together. At an altar, Abel offered his finest lamb, while Noah’s provided a sweet aroma that rose to the Lord. Where Abraham’s altar saw the salvation of a promised son; Joshua’s celebrated the entrance into the Promised Land. Gideon’s altar saw deliverance, and Elijah’s changed a nation.

 

Through the day where is the place that you meet with the Lord? Can you sense the sweet stirrings of the Holy Spirit there? Are you tired of living without passion or unfulfilled purpose? Does your heart still thirst for the living water of the Spirit as the deer pants for a cool mountain stream?

 

If you haven’t found a trysting place, do so now. Find an uncommon place, either in space or time, to get together with the Lord and His people. Meet regularly. Wait patiently. Call expectantly. Pray unceasingly. At the altar, the Lord will meet you. Every meeting you have with Him will alter your life toward the divine plan and purpose given to you by the Lord.

 

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DEVELOPING YOUR INNER LIFE

When we pray and meditate consistently on God’s Word there is emotional and spiritual space created in our hearts.  The Holy Spirit fills this space (OUR INNER LIFE) for the purpose of creating a greater level communion with us. He seeks inward fellowship with us.

 

I was encouraged early in my ministry to read The Art of Prayer (Faber & Faber). The Art of Prayer is concerned in particular with the most frequently used and best loved of all Orthodox prayers – the Lord’s Prayer. It deals also with the general question ‘What is Prayer?’, with the different degrees of prayer from ordinary oral prayer to unceasing prayer of the heart, with the dangers of illusion and discouragement, and the need for seclusion and inner peace.

 

(See https://www.faber.co.uk/9780571191659-the-art-of-prayer.html)

 

There is an excerpt that describes the holy need for developing our inner life through prayer and meditation. The excerpt reads, “There are many among you who have no knowledge of the inner work required of the man who would hold God in remembrance. Nor do such people even understand what remembrance of God means, or know anything about spiritual prayer, for they imagine that the only right way of praying is to use such prayers as are to be found in Church books. As for secret communion with God in the heart, they know nothing of this, nor of the profit that comes from it, nor do they ever taste its spiritual sweetness. Those who only hear about spiritual meditation and prayer and have no direct knowledge of it are like men blind from birth, who hear about the sunshine without ever knowing what it really is. Through this ignorance they lose many spiritual blessings, and are slow in arriving at the virtues which make for the fulfillment of God’s good pleasure.”

 

To develop inwardly and walk the path of spiritual growth, we must first be willing to grow in our devotional, relational and personal commitment to worship, prayer, study of the Word of God and to our relationship with the Holy Spirit. The initial steps to such growth happen naturally as we seek to be continually filled with the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 5:18) and stay committed to our own personal growth.

 

For we who want to go deeper in our personal growth need spiritual guidance from the Holy Spirit. He truly desires to lead us into an intimate and exciting realm of spiritual learning. Like attending any school, be it elementary or college, it is best to set a fixed time each day to worship, pray and study. It is best that during this time we allow no interruptions. If we remain committed and consistent in such disciplines, our spiritual life will become deeper and more glorious. The result will be a new found awareness of God’s Presence and power.

 

I encourage you to start with three mornings a week and then add a morning each week until every morning begins with Him. There are many of testimonies of people who chose to meet with the Lord each morning. This practice has resulted in the majority of them (from St. Francis to John Wesley to Billy Graham) experiencing marvelous spiritual experiences, including victories, miracles and great joy.

 

In my own life, I have found the continual development of my inner life to be encouraging, exhilarating, and very satisfying. I am reminded even now of the words to an old hymn. These words are the theme to the development of my own inner life. They are the goal to all I desire to become and I hope they inspire you as well.

 

“To be like Jesus, to be like Jesus. All I ask is to be like Him. All through life’s journey, from earth to glory, all I ask…to be like Him.”

 

 

Will You Be 1 of 300?

The Altar of His Presence. My new book will be available online and in bookstores on July 17 (next Monday). For thousands of years altars have played a significant role in the spiritual lives of God’s people. From the first mention of the word in Genesis Chapter Eight, the altar has been a “meeting place” between the Lord and His people.

Inside the Tabernacle of Moses there were two altars. The first, in the Outer Court, was named, the Brazen Altar. Built out of brass the Brazen Altar was the place where animal’s blood was shed and “covered” the sins of an individual. This “covering” enabled them to be “seen as righteous” in the sight of God. The second altar was placed in front of the large and imposing curtain that separated the Holy Place from the Most Holy Place. It was called the Altar of Incense. This altar “uncovered” the heart of the true worshipper. Morning and evening the High Priest offered incense “up” to the LORD. The rising aroma of the incense was an ongoing offering of praise and worship given by the Priest and God’s people.

 

The altar is no longer about shedding the blood of animals or offering incense. It doesn’t have to happen at a tabernacle, sanctuary or cathedral. It is not about us making an attempt to get God’s attention or to stay His wrath. Coming to the altar is about us humbly calling upon the Name of the Lord. Those who call upon the Name of the Lord shall be saved. But salvation is much more than entrance into heaven. Salvation is about wholeness. Wholeness comes through relationship. Such a relationship is based on the Lord’s promise to meet with us, live in us and minister through us. His Word declares that if we will come to Him, He will deliver, heal, and create in us a new heart and mind.

I urge you to make plans to purchase your own copy of The Altar of His Presence. I encourage you to read it slowly. As you read, respond to the nudging of the Holy Spirit. Experience Him in ways never experienced before. He desires to put Himself on display to, in and through you. He wants to show the world and all who are in it how gracious, great and glorious He really is.

Here’s where I need your help.

 

You can help us spread this much needed message to America and the world.

 

Next week the book will be sold in stores for $16.99 per copy. But, I believe the Lord has given me a plan to get a copy of this new book into the hands of thousands of Christian leaders before the end of the summer. How is that possible?

 

In Judges 6 the Lord called Gideon to lead a small contingent of Israelite volunteers (300 to be exact) to one of the greatest victories that has ever occurred on the earth. Like Gideon, I need 300 people to stand with us and give a $100 donation to our ministry before July 31st.  Every person who gives $100 will be given a signed copy to keep for themselves and 7 copies to give away to the leaders in their church, their friends and/or their family. This donation will also enable us to give another 8 books away to pastors, civic leaders, business people and to those who hold political office in our country.

The Lord has assured me that by giving away 5000 copies of our book, tens of thousands of people will hear the message of directly as well as in discussions, sermons and songs. We believe millions more will want to purchase their own copy of this powerful book.

Will you be 1 of 300? Would you go online or send your check today? Are you ready to receive your copies and give them away? You can do so by either emailing us at info@altarofhispresence.com (we will send you a link to give your $100 online) or by going to our bookstore at: http://www.thealtarofhispresence.com.

 

Now is the time for the world to hear this message. Our staff is standing by to send a first edition signed copy for you and the people in your life.

 

Don’t delay!

There’s Power in Praying the Scripture

There are passages in the Bible that describe the special privileges and advantages to those who are born again and continue to grow up “in Christ.” The Scripture tells us that by being born again, we are given the privilege to become sons or the offspring of God (John 1:12). The Apostle Paul said that maturing sons are those who put to death the misdeeds of the body, who have received the spirit of adoption, who know in their spirit that they are God’s children and are led by the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:13-16).

 

Such people understand that as sons of God, they have been made to be kings and priests unto God our Father (Revelation 1:5-6). And, as kings and priests, we have been given the right to come boldly to the throne of grace. Hebrews 4 tells us that we should come boldly because God’s Word is alive and powerful within us. It is sharper than any two-edged sword. Therefore, when we (as kings and priests) declare, agree with and pray the Scriptures, we come into agreement with God, and His power is released to answer our prayers.

 

Not only does He hear our prayers, but He also promises to answer them when we pray in line with His will (1 John 5:14). He will give us the desire of our heart when our delight is Him and His Word (Psalm 37:1-5). That which the Lord has declared (His Word), He hastens to perform it (Jeremiah 1:12). That is why praying and declaring the Scripture is so powerful. When we pray the Scripture we are putting ourselves into that which the Lord has declared. This kind of praying causes His power to be released into our lives and circumstances.

 

The greatest purpose of such prayer is to help guide us in our relationship with the Lord. Praying the Scripture helps us to be better acquainted with our heavenly Father, the Lord Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit and the Scripture (we cannot separate God from His Word!). Prayer is fellowship with God. Prayer combined with Praise is key if we want to abide in His Presence. For in that place we have constant communication with Him. This supernatural communication is vital to our spiritual health. The Bible says in 1 Peter 3:12 that He is actually watching us, anticipating our call and looking to hear what we have to tell Him, because He wants to be with us and answer us when we call.

 

Here are some more benefits of Praying the Scriptures.

 

·        Your praying becomes the overcoming “word of your testimony” (Revelation 12:11).

 

·        Your soul “believes” what it hears (Romans 10:17).

 

·        You “agree” with what God says about you and your life (Matthew 18:19).

 

·        God’s Word will not return empty, but will perform its intended purpose (Isaiah 55:10-11).

 

·        Your praying will assist you in memorizing Scripture and knowing the Word of God (Psalm 119:11).

 

Praying the Scriptures will cause you to learn what God says about certain situations, and by praying His Word you will see His results. His ways are higher than our ways. His thoughts greater than our thoughts. Praying the Scriptures brings interaction with the purpose, power and Presence of the Holy Spirit.

 

I encourage you to make a commitment to pray the Scriptures out loud every day in June. I promise if you will pray this way for a month, you will find yourself aligned with the powerful force of God’s Word and you will find yourself living in His Word, His Will and His Way. The result will be victory in your life, in your home, and be able to handle situations as easily as the Lord Jesus would handle them.

 

If you can’t wait until June 1st, start today! Start with Psalm 23 or 91, Joshua 1 or Romans 8. You will be glad you did!  I love you and bless you in Jesus’ Name!   

Listen to What People Are Saying…

The Altar of His Presence will be available through our bookstore after June 20th. You can view it and my other books at http://www.thealtarofhispresence.com.

Here is a sampling of what people are saying about this dynamic new book…

Rev. Doyle Fulkes, Superintendent of the Southern Idaho Ministry Network of the Assemblies of God in Nampa, Idaho said, “Prayer is the power that sustains change, drives commitment, and creates the Christ-likeness for every Christian. Robert Stone has laid out the process, potential, and practice of prayer for the believer using systematic and biblically based principles in a devotional form. Follow these principles through study and reflection in each chapter and find a whole new way to experience Christ and the dynamic of the Holy Spirit with life changing results.”

Charles Patterson, Pastor Emeritus of Church of the Hills and Founder of Charles Patterson Ministries (in Austin, Texas) said, “Many people today are often intimidated by the idea of developing a personal and intimate relationship with the Lord. A relationship within which one can actually experience His Presence and recognize His voice as He speaks in many different ways. Robert Stone skillfully opens Scripture to reveal that this idea is actually God’s. Furthermore, as God’s invitation to us becomes our priority we discover God’s purpose, pattern, and path-way to know and experience Him in a new and very intimate way. I highly recommend this book both as a study guide and a daily devotion to discover the beauty of God’s Presence more fully. It will truly alter your life.”

Jeff Knebel from Cedar Park, Texas said, “Robert Stone is a revolutionary. In his new book, The Altar of His Presence, Robert gives insight to mankind’s ability to commune with God on a personal and unprecedented level. Robert can take the most difficult biblical concepts, particularly involving the wonderful intervening Presence of the Holy Spirit, and make them seem extraordinarily simple for the average Christian. Robert’s teaching that each of us can experience the manifest Presence of God through a loving relationship with our Lord is truly life-altering. I encourage everyone to join the Lord at the altar of His Presence (the meeting place of our heart). Thank you, Robert, for another “altar’ed” work. Your message has forever changed my view of the Holy Spirit and His work in my life.”

Mike Valiton, Pastor of Finance and Operations, Lake Hills Church in Austin, Texas said, “The Altar of His Presence is a powerful, passionate, and uplifting read that inspires the reader to come experience the manifest Presence of God. This book is rich with spiritual guidance, biblical truth, and practical application. Robert leads us through a journey into the proper order of God and His will for our lives. The book details God’s promise to meet us, deliver us, heal us, and create in us a new heart and mind. All we have to do is believe!  Author Robert Stone uses Scripture, stories, and vivid word pictures to wonderfully illustrate how much God loves us and wants to bless us with a personal relationship with Him. This book is motivating, captivating, encouraging, and invigorating. Finally, The Altar of His Presence reminds us that through God’s grace we not only have a place, a person, and a people to meet the Lord, but most importantly we have God in us, and that is where God ultimately wants to meet. There’s no better time than now!”

Finally, Ministry Partner Dwight Karm from The Woodlands, Texas said, “The Altar of His Presence is one of the best books I have read. The book is full of insight born out of Robert’s research. He presents it in a very understandable way. The information about the materials and manner of how the people in the Bible built historical altars fascinated me. I was inspired to learn how God blessed every one of His people who came to the altar and that He gave many of them a special ability to communicate with Him and other believers. The book also reminds the reader that an altar can be built anywhere and at any time. The promise of God is true. If we will come to the altar, the Lord will always meet us there.”

To Order Your Copy of The Altar of His Presence click here or go to www.thealtarofhispresence.com.

I had an “altar’ed moment” last night.

I had a very special “altar’ed moment” last night. The Presence and Glory of God was so thick that I fully expected to visibly see the glory cloud of shekinah at any moment. For several hours I watched people of every race and color being saved, healed and delivered. On four different occasions a supernatural sound filled the auditorium. The only words I have are awesome, wonderful and glorious!  Where did this “altar’ed moment” take place?

My family and I experienced this tremendous move of the Holy Spirit during Tye Tribbett’s “Bloody Win” tour stop at Grant A.M.E. church here in Austin. The praise and worship was dynamic. The music was the best I have ever heard. In response to the glory of God that poured into the room hundreds of people celebrated the victorious and ascended Lord Jesus Christ. We literally stood in awe for hours.

It is evident that Tye Tribbett is an anointed young man and songwriter. He has considerable spiritual depth and insight. I first met him years ago. And, he continues to be a spirit-filled vocalist who knows how to get worshippers rejoicing. Tye has a  passion for the gospel that infuses everything he does. I like what he recently said, “things in the world can come against us so aggressively. Whether it’s bills or health or personal struggles, it can get harsh, but hold on! Hold on! We’ve got to sing louder for the God who is stronger!”

Several times this morning I have felt impressed to pray for Tye and the ministry God has given him. I truly believe that the Holy Spirit is giving him a “sound” that will reach this generation. The “sound” is more than his music, Tye spoke powerfully last night about the solutions that this generation must embrace to experience true spiritual revival.

His message reminded me of similar words given to me by the Holy Spirit. In my upcoming book, The Altar of His Presence, I wrote, “We often wonder why God has not done anything to change many of the issues in the world. We wonder why God hasn’t brought peace to war, overturned abortion laws, stopped the violence in our cities, or brought revival to our land. Many of us are waiting for God to take action when in fact God is waiting for us. God is waiting for His people to call upon Him. He is waiting for His followers to genuinely repent of lives that have become too busy, too focused on success, and too measured by how much money we make. He is waiting for us to humble ourselves and return to the altar of His Presence.”

We must remember that ALL the promises of God are Yes and Amen in Christ Jesus. Just as the Lord promised Jeremiah that He would answer his prayer and tell him of great and unsearchable things (see Jeremiah 29:12-13), He has declared the same to us. If we will ask, it will be given to us. If we will knock, the door will be opened. If we will seek, we will find.

The Lord wants to have a meeting with us. His will is not that we seek Him out only on Sundays or when we are having problems. He loves for us to be in His Presence. He loves to cover us with His wings. If we will draw near to Him, He has promised to honor us with His Presence, glory and power.  If we will come with a pure heart, call to Him and seek His face, He will listen to us and answer us in wonderful dimensions of goodness, grace and glory.

Pray for Tye. Pray for his ministry team. Pray that the Lord will use him to speak to and reach this generation with the gospel.

Pray for me. Pray for my new book. Pray that tens of thousands of copies will fill the earth with the message of meeting with the Lord. Pray that people all over the world will be inspired to experience intimate encounters with the glory of God…every day…and every hour.

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I love you!

Robert.

 

Do You Have an Altar’ed Moment?

This past weekend was really special.  On Sunday morning I was ministering from God’s Word in a local church here in Texas. About halfway through my message I and everyone in the building experienced an “altar’ed” moment.

 

The Presence of the Holy Spirit poured into the auditorium. Without effort, the message I was preaching came flowing out from my heart and mouth like an unstoppable flood. The people began raising their hands and expressing themselves, each giving glory to God. The atmosphere changed in a matter of moments causing tears to flow and lives to be changed. For over an hour we embraced, enjoyed and experienced His glorious Presence.

 

A few hours later the Holy Spirit nudged me. Everyone had gone home and I was on my way home to Austin. That’s when the Spirit began reminding me of similar times and experiences. He reminded me of a time when I was a teenager. My family had moved because my dad had found a new job. Because of the move, I had to change school districts between my sophomore and junior year. Changing high schools can be hard. Making new friends, learning new teaching styles, adjusting to new teachers and new surroundings for some teens can be really difficult and the changes were taking their toll on me.

 

Then a few months into the school term I had an “altar’ed” moment. It happened during the praise and worship time of a Sunday night church service. We were not singing anything special or new. In fact, we were singing an old chorus, when all of a sudden the Presence of God began filling the room. Without invitation people began leaving their seats and moving toward the front and gathering at the altar.

 

A local ministry team/singing group called The King’s Witnesses (they were was based out of our church) went to the platform and began ministering in song. The pastor and the elders began praying for people. In a matter of minutes heaven filled the place. It was as though we were in the throne room of the Most High. You could almost hear angels singing. The Shekinah was so thick it felt awkward to breathe.

 

I was kneeling at the end of the altar when I looked up and saw my name written on the front of one of the guitars that belonged to a member of the King’s Witnesses. At that moment my life was altar’ed. I don’t know why me seeing my name on that guitar did anything. I just remember that at that moment…the Lord touched me and did the work. I don’t remember asking the Lord to act on my behalf, heal me or deliver me. I just know that at that moment, I was altar’ed and the struggle I had been experiencing was over.

 

Peace flooded my heart and soul like the storm surge that invades the coast when a hurricane comes onshore. I knew at that moment everything was going to be ok. I knew…that I knew…that I knew…the Lord would not leave or forsake me. I knew that He had the whole world AND ME in His hands! After that night the school seemed different. The teachers were not the same. The other students were changed. Even I was different. What had really happened? I can say with confidence, I had been altar’ed by being in the Presence of the Lord.

 

I have been reminded of that night many times since. It has become a “touch point” of faith for me. Whenever I face difficult circumstances or a situation to which I have no answer, I am reminded of that night. I am reminded that the Lord knows where I am, He knows who I am and He knows what I have need of before I even ask. The time spent that night at the altar…truly altered my life.

 

Would you like to share one of your “altar’ed” moments? If so, email me today at info@altarofhispresence.com. I will read your story and rejoice with you concerning the goodness of our Lord Jesus Christ. The bible says that we are to rejoice with those who rejoice and I want to rejoice with you. Let me know if I have your permission to share it with our readers. I know that there are many who are reading today that would love to hear the story of your life being altar’ed.

 

One more thing, if you are carrying a heavy burden or if you are ill, hurting or need an answer from the Lord, email me. Susan and I will pray for you. We will ask and agree with you for the Holy Spirit to provide an answer to your prayer. We will pray that He will give you an altar’ed moment! Soon you will be healed, delivered and rejoicing over what the Lord has done for you! Either way, write to me today and share your heart!

 

I look forward to hearing from you…Robert.