Spiritual Experiences

I was standing at the edge of the Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland, as far out on the hexagonal rocks as I could without getting wet, when I heard a voice behind me from someone in our tour group.

“It’s a spiritual experience, isn’t it?” the man said.

“It’s lovely,” I answered.

Lovely, yes. Spiritual, no.

Now, I’m the first person who can have a spiritual experience with a bunch of rocks and an ocean, but that day, I wasn’t feeling it. That day, it was only lovely.

Lately, I’ve been getting my spiritual experiences in more traditional places. That is, in church. And that’s quite a change. Two Aprils ago, my husband and I spent Easter at the Quiet House at Laity Lodge because I couldn’t go inside a church without having a panic attack. Back then, rocks and water would have done the trick.

But not now.

One Sunday, I was taking the photo you see above. The following Sunday, I was in my church. Both were lovely. Only one was spiritual.


  1. Very interesting .. Would like to here more about the journey and what prompted panic attacks in church … I am glad anyways for your progress.

    Last Sunday my wife and I skipped church and instead walked three miles with the dog in a beautiful park along a lake. It was lovely and spiritual.

  2. Kelly Sauer says

    Oh you know this touches on so much for me… Most days I wonder if I’ll ever be able to go back – and then God calls me to Relevant/Allume this year on grace… It’s going to be spiritual. But it might not be lovely. Because that happens too.

  3. dukeslee says

    Ah… Smiling here, knowing that you’ve found a home. May all your comings and goings — in and outside of church — be lovely, and as often as He sees fit, spiritual as well.

    And … because we had a phone conversation about The Message the other day, I’m going to quote from THAT paraphrase in particular: 🙂

    “Every time you cross my mind, I break out in exclamations of thanks to God. Each exclamation is a trigger to prayer. I find myself praying for you with a glad heart. I am so pleased that you have continued on in this with us, believing and proclaiming God’s Message, from the day you heard it right up to the present. There has never been the slightest doubt in my mind that the God who started this great work in you would keep at it and bring it to a flourishing finish on the very day Christ Jesus appears.” Philippians 1:3-6

  4. I just want to reach right through this screen and give you a big hug!

    I never know when or where I’m going to sense the Spirit’s breath. But it’s always a lovely surprise.

  5. I find my spiritual experiences happen when I’m least expecting them… but then… I’m not frequently in the presence of a church — I like the cathedral of God out in the open.

    Hugs Megan — I to get what you’re saying and appreciate your experience — anywhere you are is lovely!

  6. pastordt says

    For me, it would be both. My entire stay in Ireland was a spiritual experience in a lot of ways. And the Giant’s Causeway, if I’d seen it, probably would have been as well. BUT I am grateful with you that you have found peace in your church, that you have met God there. May it always be so.

  7. I’m going to leave a comment similar to one I left at David Rupert’s place today. I’m reading a book about a man who through hiked the Appalachian Trail. He describes his journey as a spiritual experience as he slows down to take in the wonder all about him. But here’s the thing–at the same time during his hike, he was reading through the entire Bible. The Spirit speaks through things like creation and beauty, but also breathes through the Word of God–we need both, don’t we?

  8. Right now, I’d settle for a spiritual experience anywhere, any place, anytime. Sigh. Bless you! I am happy for you and envious, in the best way.

  9. I have to say that the water and sky in the photo have such lovely colours of blue.

  10. I love you on this journey…

  11. Thank you for sharing. It’s nice to know that someone else is on a simillar journey!

  12. I love that you feel the difference. That’s pretty cool. Love that picture too.

  13. I have spiritual experiences in the weirdest places. Sometimes in church, for sure. But also often in the grocery store. Seriously. I have said more than once that Jesus lives in the grocery store, in between the Starfish Tuna and the string cheese.

  14. Oh, panic attacks. I’m being besieged with them lately. And they are not fun, sorta like mini-heart attacks that knock ya upside the head and heart. I’m sorry you’ve suffered from them too.

    Everywhere we are is “spiritual” when we’ve got the Holy Spirit in us, but not every situation is glittery. This piece of yours reminds me of a recent (April 25) reading in “My Utmost for His Highest” by Chambers where he says, in regard to “a time of inspiration and insight”:

    “Those times are a gift of God entirely. You cannot give them to yourself when you choose. — If you make a god of your best moments, you will find that God will fade out of your life until you do the duty that lies nearest, and have learned not to make a fetish of your rare moments.” (2Tim4:2 was the scripture focus)

    Blessings. (and this is me, for some reason now I have a green design instead of a head. oh well. techno fairies are at it again.)

  15. Rebecca Trotter says

    Megan, this post gives me hope. I don’t have panic attacks, but the Spirit in be becomes so agitated and disturbed when I try to attend church that it’s hard for me to sit through a service. I’ve hardly tried for the last couple of years. It’s my own personal thing – part of my walk at this moment with God. But I do miss it. I’m glad you’re able to go back and find the spiritual in church again. It does give me hope that one day I will too. Blessings to you!