Desire God...... June 7, 2020
Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4
For a day in your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere. I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of wickedness. Psalm 84:10 ESV
Being near God and walking with him daily is... THE GREATEST PRIVILEGE... a person can experience. Being with God does not happen by accident, but is a conscience decision of the heart / person seeking to do so. Seek the LORD and his strength; seek his presence continually! Psalm 105:4 ESV. What causes a person to daily live desiring and acknowledging God’s presence the way the Psalmist does in verse 10 above? There are many attributes of God that can move a person to bask in and seek His presence. First let me remind you of the teaching from just a few weeks ago acknowledging the fact, “There Is No One Like the Lord Our God.” Exodus 8:10 ESV The following are a few suggestions to being in, or to continue to grow in the process of building, a relational presence with God.
The first one can be the most difficult, yet it is the best place to begin. Just be still; whatever it takes to quiet the thoughts or questions that continually race through your mind, attempt to silence them and...... be still. Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth! Psalm 46:10 ESV Let the exaltation of God begin in your mind. As I have taught many times.....everything begins in the mind, and what dominates our thoughts will affect how we view God. I believe many have missed what God is accomplishing because they are busy with life and settling for second best—“the tents of wickedness” instead of being near him even if it is just as a door keeper. The word of God can help the mind be still when reflecting upon it. Many times God will use scripture to speak to us when we slow down, become still, and meditate on Him and His word. I will meditate on your precepts and fix my eyes on your ways. I will delight in your statutes; I will not forget your word. Psalm 119:15-16 ESV This has been important in any age, but especially so with all that we are experiencing today.
Be Real and Personal With God:
God must become more real to you than the clothes on your back. God must not be just an acquaintance you see every once in a while, but a person whom you converse with through prayer...... often!!!!! Pray without ceasing, 1 Thessalonians 5:17 ESV Let your conversation / prayer with and to God be real.... talk with Him as you would if you could physically see him. And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words. Matthew 6:7 ESV Have private personal conversations with God. Plan times in your life for just you and God. But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you. Matthew 6:6 ESV Jesus himself would go out from the crowds to get alone with his father. And rising very early in the morning, while it was still dark, he departed and went out to a desolate place, and there he prayed. Mark 1:35 ESV
Be Practicing for Heaven Now:
Come to Him with singing, praise and worship in your heart. Let’s come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise! Psalms 95:2 ESV Serve the Lord with gladness! Come into his presence with singing. Psalms 100:2 ESV Anticipate being with God; it will change how you view church / his courts/ being in his presence..... as a group and when alone with him. This needs to be a practice in your private life before participating in worship together as a church. Church together needs to be an outward expression of what you do with God alone. Let church be a place of intentional, corporative, participation with God’s working and presence in your personal life. Whatever you do, never let church become routine; the church together ... is practice so to speak.... for heaven. There is absolutely nothing routine about worshipping God.
If you have not developed the discipline of being still, it might be the greatest challenge in the application of this teaching. It is, however, of upmost importance to grow relationally with God. Reflect with me on Psalm 23... He leads me by the still waters. It is there that he, restores my soul. Never forget what Jesus taught concerning living water..... He is the LIVING water... John 4:10 & John 7:37b -38. Jesus is the water that can calm your life and refresh your soul, but you must drink the water of life he provides. Jesus is to the soul what water is to the body.... refreshing.
Pray!!! Prayer is one of the avenues God uses to provide us with a drink of his goodness. Prayers need not just consist of request, but with praise and adoration to God. In your still time, I challenge you to look up the following verses ... pick one or two and commit them to memory. Psalms 30:11-12 ... 47:6-8 ..... 48:1-2 .... 56:3-4 ... 59:16-17 ... 69:30 ... 71:22-23 ...104:33 ... 138:1-2 ... 147:1 ... all of 150. Look for verses through out the Bible involving how those who went before us expressed worship and praise to God and be a living example of their written testimonies from the Bible.
Practice this now and you will receive a taste of heaven on earth.
Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4 May your heart’s desire be.... to desire God ....for he will give himself to you! In reality he already has ...on the cross. My prayer for all of us is to desire God’s presence and that it will trump our desires for anything less.
Because of His Grace ~ Pastor David