Just before last night’s church service, a friend commented, “The spirit in this morning’s service was awesome.”  I quickly agreed and added that I noticed it from the first song through the final conversation at the door.  I am sure that we were talking about the same thing – the environment or atmosphere as God’s people met together.  Because it is hard to define completely, perhaps it must be experienced firsthand to understand it fully.  Although we refer to an earthly environment, I am convinced that it is a sense of God’s presence in our midst that we feel. 
Certainly, we can experience God’s presence in a personal way, but there is something wonderful and unique about the atmosphere in a gathering of God’s children.  I am convinced that preachers are acutely aware of the congregation’s spirit every week. We often talk of the “liberty” sensed in preaching to a group where “the Spirit of the Lord is” (2 Cor. 3:17).  Without His presence, we cannot duplicate or manufacture that environment.  We can have an enjoyable or exciting time, but not a spiritually meaningful one. 
How do we experience that spirit in a worship service?  Music certainly can play a part in tuning our spirit to meet with God.  Yesterday, we were blessed with a great brass trio, a choir rejoicing in God’s great mercy and love, and a congregation singing energetically about the victory we have in Jesus.  I especially appreciated how the songs directed our minds and hearts toward the message about our possessions in Christ and how that enables us to overcome the world. 
More than just music, the hearts of those gathering must be in tune with God’s Spirit.  We must find ourselves walking in the Spirit in the days before we meet together.  Obedient living aligns our spirit with His will and allows for genuine worship. 
Finally, earnest prayer is a vital component to invite God’s presence in our midst.  Can you imagine the impact of hundreds of God’s children seeking His face in the days and hours before they gather?  “Lord, renew a right spirit in me and meet with us as we worship you this week.”  He has promised to answer. 

Psalm 145:18-19  The Lord is nigh unto all them that call upon him, to all that call upon him in truth. [19] He will fulfill the desire of them that fear him: he also will hear their cry, and will save them.
If you are a part of New Testament Baptist Church, I hope you were there yesterday to experience it for yourself.  If not, I invite you to come next week with a heart prepared to meet with God. 
If you read this from somewhere else in the world, I pray that you find the opportunity to worship with a Bible-believing church that is filled with God’s presence.