Notable Quote: On the Power of the Presence (Leanne Payne)

I’ve been on a personal growth journey for several weeks (more on that in a whole other post). As I’ve soaked in a fabulous recommended read, The Healing Presence by Leanne Payne, I continue to mine powerful golden nuggets to examine and ponder. I want to think about where I’ve got to in my life with God. Have I gone so far as Kierkegaard warned?

“We’ve forgotten how to exist, to be.” (The Healing Presence, p. 48)

Payne immediately suggests, “We can only think about being. In other words, we can think in terms of Christian dogma, but we cannot love and obey God.”

In the chapter titled “The Power of the Presence,” Payne writes,

Where the presence of the Lord is truly invoked, there is little difficulty in believing on Him or moving in the spiritual power and authority He brings.

To regain what we’ve forgotten or omitted requires not only illumination and complete change of mind-set, but a deep and profound repentance. If few understand His Presence with us, fewer still understand how it is we are to collaborate with God to do His bidding. We have to learn again the lessons of how the life of God is expressed, sacramentally, with and through us as individuals and as the corporate Body of Christ. Repentance for our failure to love God and to love one another comes first. (The Healing Presence, pp. 49-50)

This chapter speaks to me, but I’m sitting with this piece for now.

Perhaps, out of context, this is difficult to grasp—or maybe this can still speak as a stand alone thought. I hope you ponder it, too.



Questions to Think About…

What does it mean to invoke the power of the Presence of God?

How might the Early Church have experienced the Presence in contrast to modern expectation? Does the modern expectation of the power of the Presence reflect biblical wisdom, knowledge, or understanding?

What is my personal understanding and expectation of the Presence of God?

What does the Bible say about the power of the Presence of God?



* The Healing Presence. Leanne Payne. Hamewith Books: Grand Rapids. 2001.


  1. I don’t understand the quote: “We can only think about being. In other words, we can think in terms of Christian dogma, but we cannot love and obey God,” but I do appreciate the excerpt.

    From my own experience and observation, I think part of the reason the church as a whole has lost the ‘power of the presence of God’ is because we have become divided; we have focused more on dogma than on loving God and loving neighbor as the excerpt inferred; we have either quenched the Spirit by believing the doctrine of cessation or grieved the Spirit through practicing presumption; and although God has given us church leaders, there has been either direct or indirect teaching and practicing or taking away the God-given power from the people to obey the entire Gospel, which includes making disciples and not just inviting them to church.

    I’m looking forward to hearing more. 🙂

    1. I thought it might be a risk to isolate the portions I did. Turns out, though, that your thoughts are so very close to being in sync with the chapter…

      As I was reading, it struck me that the tendency is to lean intellectual (to know about God), rather than relational (to really KNOW him). One piece that may not make the stage based on the isolated chunk I shared.

      I really like your share up there. Some more for me to think on. Thanks!

      1. Yes! Knowing about God rather than knowing Him.

        I just attended a church event upon the invitation of a friend who needed a ride to it, and although I enjoyed the music, I cringed at the mood of legalism. One of the things that was said had to do with the songs we sing in church. The guest preacher said that songs must have deep Bible truths—read doctrine— or they are worthless. It saddened my heart, because so many of the songs of recent years may not all be full of doctrine, but neither do all of the psalms. They are songs expressing praise, worship and love for God… a love that has been lacking because of focus on the law. More and more, people are beginning to learn about the God of love and not a God of condemnation and damnation. Sure, He is Holy, but He is also full of love, mercy, and grace.

        1. Have I mentioned how much I love interacting with my friends and their thoughts here? Just love when you pop in and drop wisdom, insight, or thought-provoking comments. Thank you!

  2. I remember Leanne Payne….

    Leanne Payne once touched me on the chest with her fingertips – when we nearly collided in a corridor on opposite sides of an inter-communicating door simultaneously – the intensity of the energies of that immediate and spontaneous impartation through that merest touch of her fingertips was like a thermo-nuclear detonation – it nearly threw me off my feet – only His Word kept me on my feet in that moment (Job 4:4 (Moffatt Translation) Your Word has kept us on our feet) – but she had just come from her private devotions of practising His Real Presence – her Long Obedience and her act of pressing further into His Real Presence – it was only afterwards that I realised what exactly she had “uploaded” directly into the noetic-communicative faculties of my Human Spirit….and what I would do with it….it was an immense real energetic disruptive pneumatological transference in the Holy Spirit (she said: “I have Another living within me” – I know I came into direct contact with Him)….I met Clay McLean later and I tried to describe it but it caused a language emergency.

    1. Thanks for sharing, Mark. I enjoyed your comment very much. I wondered what it might be like to sit for a moment with Ms. Payne. I’m unfamiliar with Clay McLean, but will definitely take a look…

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