June 3

Written by Bill Grandi on June 3rd, 2021

Have you ever had one of those “holy moments?” It’s one of those moments when you become so aware of God’s presence the only response is one of awe and humility. I’ve had several of those moments in my 45+ years as a pastor and my 60+ years as a Christ-follower.

The year was the summer of ’89 (no not ’69). It had been like many other summers-bike riding, preaching, ministry, moving Tami back from Florida. She lived with us for awhile as she settled in teaching at a school district north of our county substituting as a fill-in for a teacher on family leave as her husband battled cancer. One Sunday night something led her to visit another church in our city (we did not have evening services). She talked so much about her visit I asked  if she cared if I went. Of course not. She knew I would drive and also probably buy her something to eat or drink afterwards. Anyway, by August of that summer my life had been changed.

I experienced God’s presence.

My burning bush.

My ladder to heaven and wrestling with God.

My moment in the “temple” when “all was stripped away and I simply came” as Matt Redman’s song reflected. (Cue up The Heart of Worship)

That preceded a period of epic growth-for me and the church. I sensed God’s presence in everything I did. My speech. My preaching. My study. My activities. The church had 24 additions in about a 3-4 month period-18 of them new converts.  It also helped me weather losing my job because I wanted to be a spiritual leader, not a CEO type.

I long for that Emmaus time again-when my eyes are open and I realize I was with Jesus. When the communion with Him was special. When a bush burns (not literally) and isn’t consumed. When the things of the world grow strangely dim. When worship takes priority. When I experience a holy moment of being in God’s presence.

“Father, you don’t need an appointment to meet with me. You don’t have to say, ‘I’m coming at such-and-such a time. Be ready.’  I’m simply asking you to come and meet with me.”

{Note: Today I celebrate a very holy moment. 46 years ago God blessed Jo and me with our oldest daughter, Tami. Her birth was a “holy moment” for me. I continue to be grateful for her life and how God still grips her and she Him.}


6 Comments so far ↓

  1. Glynn says:

    One of my holy moments, involving me and two others, happened in a small church in Erfurt, Germany in early May of 2002. One (and perhaps the smallest) of the impacts on me: I eventually wrote and published five novels.

  2. Ryan S. says:

    The question I must ask myself is am I getting in the way of the “holy moments” at times. I know God is always present. I know God is always near me and as a believer, living in me. One would think that those “moments” would be more frequent, even the norm vs the exception. Should they be? If not, why not?
    I don’t even begin to think that I am so spiritual, I simply got use to it… Perhaps I just can’t simply handle it 24×7, 365. Perhaps God only wants to provide a taste of what Heaven will be like so we don’t get too comfortable here in this place.

    Regardless of the reason, regardless of the answer…

    It is my desire to experience those “holy moments” more frequently.

    –Happy Birthday Tami!

    • Bill Grandi says:

      Like you, Ryan, I long for more. But I do think you have put your finger on why it is perhaps not the best: I think I would get too lazy about expecting it. it would not be special for me. I long for more of those moments but also want them to be special.

  3. A holy moment I’ll never forget came the day I walked through church doors years after I’d abandoned any semblance of faith, and literally heard, “Welcome home!” How that changed the trajectory of my life, Bill.
    And no, we don’t need to experience those close encounters of the best kind often, or else they would lose their majesty and significance.
    Happy Birthday, Tami!

    • Bill Grandi says:

      Oh that kind of greeting has to warm the heart Martha. So glad you experienced that kind of holy moment. I also agree on them losing their majesty and significance.