I recently read The Presence by Alec Rowlands, which is a study on experiencing more of God. Woven throughout the book are many incredible stories of revival and overwhelming examples of God’s presence appearing in everyday life. Rowlands takes these stories to another level, researching back-stories and looking into why people experienced God’s presence in such a defining ways. His transparency and honesty are a highlight of this book.
He emphasizes that many Christians become frustrated in their search for experiencing God’s presence in powerful ways, and how there is no perfect formula for revival. Some of his stories are personal, others are little gems he found along the way, and some are timeless stories of repentance and revival. Together, they paint a beautiful picture of how the Holy Spirit works here on earth.
To be honest, though the anecdotes were entertaining and the book was well-written, I found it difficult to immerse myself in the study. I didn’t find the book to be overly engaging, and I struggled to stay connected to the content. Though I found myself agreeing with much of what Rowlands wrote, and even enjoying parts of the book, I didn’t have a strong desire to keep reading.
That being said, I think it could be a great book for a bible study, rather than a personal study. Rowlands focuses on God’s overwhelming love and desire to be close with us, and how much He wants us to be overcome by His presence. Furthermore, Rowlands emphasizes the fact that searching for God’s presence begins with simply being more Christ-like.
In exchange for honest review, I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher, Tyndale House.