To Be Near You

Psalm 84

I want to be in your presence, God, not just a traveling guest or passerby, but I want to dwell in your house … close to you. Now, I’ve said that I want it, but what I mean is that I’m hungry for it, wasted without it.  My heart and affections, desires and inner yearnings, all is drawn to you.

So I consider the birds … so simple, so beautiful in their flight and their song.  They seem to inherently know and trust in your provision, and they seem to innately understand how their own work fits into the larger picture … it is amazing and refreshing … challening!

To be near you causes shouts of joy, stories lauding your greatness, your deeds, your very character … who could help but talk about you once they’ve seen you?

[Whew … I need a break.]

During my rest I thought more about it … I know I’m on  the right path when I run to you to fill up, all who are deliberately picking out their footsteps en route to your house … each step makes them stronger!

While we walk toward you, the road is often a challenge, dry and empty.  Like others before us we will cry out to you in that place, and though it was desolate, you bring refreshment with your very presence out of the seeming emptiness.

The heat is slaked also with a gentle rain that you send to prepare me for a new crop … I know that you would not prepare a field without having plans in advance for what you’re going to do there.  This knowledge carries me through my weaknesses and struggles, bears me between my moments of strength, and leads me to approach you with great anticipation, awe, and humility.

Am I getting all of this, God?  I’m just checking in here to be certain.  You ARE the God of the covenant.  I will trust you to answer.

[Whew … I need another break.]

You have provided the way, a strong and chosen one to protect and preserve us through these attacks and challenges.  All of this further convinces me that, though I might live life in any number of places, casting my affections and energies at a thousand things, places, and people, there’s just nothing better than being close to you … even if I was only your doorstop … it would be far more than I deserve.

The crop of my heart will grow because of your tending, but you will not let me be overwhelmed and burned by the heat.  You see my coming and going, and you (only You) encourage and direct me to rely on you.

Longing.

Psalm 63

I’m so hungry I can’t stand it.  I’m sleepy with no rest.  I’m thirsty and tired of the desert sand.  There is only one satisfaction that I’m pursuing: to see you face to face … to behold and experience your glory face to face.  There is nothing like knowing and walking with you, even when everything else pretends to be as deep and fulfilling; only you satisfy.

I can’t sleep I’m so excited … which is saying something for someone like me, just ask anyone who’s laughed at my sleepyheaded-ness in the middle of the afternoon.  But when I’m focused on you (your character, your faithfulness, your grace, your sacrifice, your glory) I just want to dance.  Actually, sometimes I don’t stop at wanting to dance, I actually do.  Yep, even this whiteboy gets a little bounce, some toe tappin’, spinning, and rhythm when I look at your face.  There is a deep longing in my heart to know you more, to have every fiber in my being, emotion in my heart, and minute of my time filled up with your presence, your wisdom, and your peace.

Bring it.

Psalm 27

“Bring it.”

Bring it, world … I will walk through today in the confidence of one who saves.  I can take heart that I will see the creator and king bring his good to reality in this place, this time, redeeming it for me, and moreover, for his own glory. 

Bring it, work … I will be oppressed, heck … I am oppressed, but my confidence is not in my own ability to manage it all.  I am confident that the Lord receives me.

Bring it, economy … the Lord keeps me safe in his house … I trust in the provision and protection of the Father.

Bring it, today … because I dwell in/dwell on the beautiful face of the one who has called me his own, drawn me to himself, and who woos my deceitful heart to cry out in all sincerity, “Your face, God … let me see your face turned toward me.  Your righteousness, your judgement, your grace, mercy, and love.”

Bring it.