Monday, September 15, 2014

More Than A Sentiment

If you are like most Christians you have a few encouraging verses on the walls of your home, or the desk of your office or maybe even in your car. These verses have spoken to you at some point and you wanted to be reminded daily of their significance. Yet, we so often fail in going from being moved to being changed. The Word of God was never meant to make us feel good but has been given to be part of our transformation. Those verses must go from our walls to become part of who we are.

A few days ago I was writing about Psalm 73, pointing out that the awareness of the presence of the Lord changes everything. Today I want to pick it up again a little later in the psalm. Remember that this psalmist was struggling with why evil is permitted to exist in Yahweh's creation but standing in the presence of the Lord changed his perspective. The psalmist was repenting of his selfish perspective and then penned this:

Nevertheless I am continually with You;
You hold me by my right hand.

You will guide me with Your counsel,
And afterward receive me to glory. (Psalm 73:23-24)

To realize that no matter our attitude, the Lord is always with us, is a great place to be in our revelation of Yahweh. We have even the greater revelation that while we were still sinners Jesus died for us. The presence of the Lord has been promised to us in the same way of our salvation. Our foolishness, pride, vain ambitions do not frighten him away. He is at hand so that when we turn to seek his face he is right there. All he desires is to forgive so he can have intimacy with us. He holds our hand. He guides us and he waits to receive us into his glory.

It's as we walk in the reality of his presence, of his desire for intimacy, we too can begin to measure the worth of this relationship:

Whom have I in heaven but You?
And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You.

My flesh and my heart fail;
But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. (v. 25-26)

It is a great sentiment but if that is all it is to us, something to hang on the wall to inspire us, we are missing the reality of the Lord's presence. Jesus has promised to never leave us, to be with us until the end of the age; not a sentiment but the reality we live every day. When we are open to him, seeking him, desiring him, turning to him, leaning on him, dependent on him, trusting him, we experience the reality of him holding our hand, the truth of him guiding us with his counsel, and we gain the assurance of him receiving us into his glory.

The presence of the Lord is our daily reality. When you live it the Word will come alive to you and your clouded reality in this place will be transformed into the living reality of our loving and awesome Father. More than a sentiment.

No comments: