2Cor. 4:18 as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.
I learned a lot in my early Christian days in a very unexpected way. I found the many hours I spent doing street ministry proved to be highly educational. I can’t count the times that I talked with people who claimed to be Christians, often church attenders, who were not truly converted. I guess we have to define what I mean by conversion. I would say you could often tell that folks would talk about spiritual things in theory, sort of like an outsider looking in. They would say many of the right things but something was missing. What was the missing element? Personal experience. You can talk about many things with some degree of accuracy but everything changes when you taste it for yourself. That is especially true in regards to the gospel. As David said, taste and see that the Lord is good. This was the theme underlying everything Jonathan Edwards preached. Until the light is turned on, you are still in darkness no matter how much information you have. Here are some thoughts from Edwards on having a true sense of God.
“A true sense of the divine and superlative excellency of the things of religion; a real sense of the excellency of God, and Jesus Christ, and of the work of redemption, and the ways and works of God revealed in the gospel. There is a divine and superlative glory in these things; an excellency that is of a vastly higher kind, and more sublime nature, than in other things; a glory greatly distinguishing them from all that is earthly and temporal. He that is spiritually enlightened truly apprehends and sees it, or has a sense of it. He don’t merely rationally believe that God is glorious, but he has a sense of the gloriousness of God in his heart. There is not only a rational belief that God is holy, and that holiness is a good thing; but there is a sense of the loveliness of God’s holiness. There is not only a speculatively judging that God is gracious, but a sense how amiable God is upon that account; or a sense of the beauty of this divine attribute.”
After everything is said and done we are all hungry for something real. Theories, dogmas, creeds, and philosophies leave us empty. We can get by for a little while on empowerment slogans or principles but our heart is hungry for something more. Only when you taste the goodness of God for yourself will that hunger be met; the facades fall down before His glory and you will finally know what it means to “Keep it Real”.