A lot of people tend to believe that in order to have truly experienced God and felt the presence of the spirit, we need to have these major, life-changing revelations accompanied with huge waves of emotion and drastic changes of heart.
While these are definitely beautiful experiences, these are not the only “God moments” we can experience in our lives.
Obviously, moments like this are very powerful experiences with God, but we can also experience him in our day-to-day lives; we can certainly experience God in all the small things.
For example, Gannon is a relatively small campus.
Thanks to that fact, it’s easier for students to build community here and really feel at home.
We are able to create better, more personal relationships with students, faculty, Campus Ministry and anyone else we may encounter in this community than we would on a bigger campus, and God is certainly found within those relationships.
For instance, even something as simple as a friend making you laugh or smile when you need it can make you stop and thank God for the relationships you’re blessed with.
That in and of itself is an experience with God.
Anything that can make you pause and appreciate all that you’ve been blessed with is enough to experience God.
If we are able to take time each day to think about the things we’re thankful for, then we are experiencing God every day.
Prayer is another way we can experience God in both big and small ways.
Gannon also offers a lot of space and time for prayer.
There are several organizations and events on campus within Campus Ministry that offer prayerful experiences, such as Ichthi, The Well or Restore.
We also have Mary, Seat of Wisdom Chapel and the small chapel located directly behind it available in the Student Services Building.
These are both excellent places to enter into a prayerful atmosphere.
However, you don’t need to go anywhere in particular to pray.
You can share that moment with God anywhere at any time.
I know that I frequently experience God during prayer, wherever I may be, just knowing that God will always be listening when we speak to him.
Another good example is the retreats available to students through Campus Ministry, such as the Shine Women’s Retreat that just took place over the weekend.
We can often find ourselves focusing on having those extreme experiences on retreats and can completely miss out on all of the little moments available to us, like even the chance to talk about faith with someone we’ve just met or the chance to learn something new about your faith or another person’s faith, whether that be big or small.
“Finding God” doesn’t necessarily always have to be a huge, highly emotional experience.
It can be as simple as listening to your favorite worship song, and the experience gained from that can be just as beautiful as those major “God moments.”
If we truly take the time to look, we can find that we can experience God in several ways every single day.