A question from a student in the "Original Intent" Course:
Shirley, may I ask....when you are "in the Spirit" and find yourself swimming in the water in heaven, talking with the Lord, etc. is your natural awareness "sleeping?" Are you in a trance and your physical body resting in a bed? Do you walk through this and does it look and feel as real as when you are walking in the natural world? Does any of this take the power of your imagination to sustain this? I can imagine and visual somethings but can't sustain that and don't think is at all the same experience. Comments? Thank you.
Your question is a very good one, and I can only speak from my own experience. The Lord taught me that our imaginations were created for communication with Him. However, living in a fallen world, we must constantly sanctify them as they are also used by our fallen nature as well as the enemy. That is why we "take every thought captive to the obedience of our Lord and His Word." To answer your question, no, I am not in a trance, I am fully engaged in reading the Word when I saw these. The Lord asked if I would meet Him every morning at 6:00 AM. He also asked that the first thing I eat or drink be communion each morning. Then I would read the Word. As I read the Word and fully engaged with the story, my imagination would begin to activate, and my curious nature would begin to ask a lot of questions. When you ask, He always answers, with a picture, thought, a word. Knowing He always answers I make it a habit to wait for a response. We all hear and see in our own unique way, mine just happens to be like a story. It's how I see the world. You might get an impression, or have a "gut feeling" or remember something or someone. Just practice with Him. He loves it when we do. What does that mean Lord? What did you mean by that?" I hear the word green, what does that mean Lord, what are your telling me? Practice every day; it will grow. It's why he said to "work out" our salvation. He didn't mean you had to do anything or work for your salvation, that is a done deal. I believe He said "work out" your salvation, as you "work out" your body, or "work out" a problem. Now that you have it work it out grow strong in that most precious gift. Does it feel like this world? Yes, because that's all we have in our life experience to compare it with.