King James Version (KJV)
1 How amiable are thy tabernacles, O Lord of hosts!
2 My soul longeth, yea, even fainteth for the courts of the Lord: my heart and my flesh crieth out for the living God.
3 Yea, the sparrow hath found an house, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young, even thine altars, O Lord of hosts, my King, and my God.
4 Blessed are they that dwell in thy house: they will be still praising thee. Selah.
5 Blessed is the man whose strength is in thee; in whose heart are the ways of them.
6 Who passing through the valley of Baca make it a well; the rain also filleth the pools.
7 They go from strength to strength, every one of them in Zion appeareth before God.
8 O Lord God of hosts, hear my prayer: give ear, O God of Jacob. Selah.
9 Behold, O God our shield, and look upon the face of thine anointed.
10 For a day in thy courts is better than a thousand. I had rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness.
11 For the Lord God is a sun and shield: the Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.
12 O Lord of hosts, blessed is the man that trusteth in thee.
Have you ever just loved being in someone’s presence? Is there a person whose presence alone made all the difference? There is always One whose presence I long to be in daily. That One is Jesus!
Growing up in a church that had a prayer room was such a blessing! Throughout the years, I spent hours upon hours in that prayer room just being in the presence of God! It was in that room and at the altar that I built a deep and intimate relationship with Jesus. I would always get a sense of peace and joy from being in His presence. I brought Him every burden and everything that was weighing me down; I was transparent and intimate with God. I could tell Him things that nobody else would understand. Sometimes I would just sit after praying and read His Word, meditate, and wait to hear from Him.
When we moved into our new church building in 2009, we no longer had a prayer room. It was then I learned how privileged I was to be able to go to a prayer room where I could just cry out to God and just be in His presence. There was a strain on my relationship with God. Yes, I still prayed and sought His face but I had to really press and push to get into His presence.
I went away to college in 2011; and I went away confident with my mind made up to keep my relationship with God strong. Being away from home and my church family was difficult at times because sometimes I just needed someone to encourage me to keep praying and keep reading my Word. Being the only Christian at school was a battle and I just wanted to feel the presence of God! There were so many different spirits roaming around and all I longed for was God’s presence! I still had a relationship with God but I didn’t always feel His presence as strongly as I used to. It was then that I truly understood what the psalmist meant in this passage when he said I would rather be a doorkeeper at the house of the Lord than to dwell in the tents of the wicked! But I pressed into His presence because I wouldn’t have made it throughout my 2 years in college without Jesus.
I’m sure you can relate to yearning for the presence of the Lord! In His presence there is always fullness of joy and at His right hand pleasures evermore. At the end of the day and after I’ve done all I could on my own, I always realize I’m nothing without God and His presence! I too am like the psalmist, My soul longeth, yea, even fainteth for the courts of the Lord: my heart and my flesh crieth out for the living God. So when you’re in a dry and weary place and there’s a void I urge you to tap in and press into His presence! It’s the only thing that can satisfy and keep you.
People always ask me how do I know God like I do and how am I so wise and insightful about the things of God like I am. The answer to both of those questions are that I’ve invested and spent time in the presence of God. Not just sitting at His feet but I’ve been intimately in His face. I’ve only made it this far in life because of all the time I’ve spent with Him. For it’s truly better to spend just one day in His presence(house) than to go a thousand days without Him. I pray that this encourages you to spend more time in His presence and in His Word, and then you too will see what a difference the presence of God makes!
God bless! GUEST BLOGGER FOR THE MONTH OF SEPTEMBER: KEONA