Read Psalm 43:3-4 (the Message)
Give my your lantern and compass, give me a map,
So I can find my way to the sacred mountain, to the place of your presence,
To enter the place of worship, meet my exuberant God,
Sing my thanks with a harp, magnificent God , my God.
Three things that strike me about these verses:
- The Psalmist is aware of his desperate need for God. Period. end of sentence. Often these verses are read alongside Psalm 43:1 which says “as a deep pants for water, so my soul longs for You , O God.”
The need for God is as vital and life giving to our souls as water is to human life.
Are you desperate for God? Do you desire to be in His presence as a vital part of each day?
It is this desperation that leads to the second point:
- The psalmist will do whatever it takes to be in God’s presence! His desire drives him into action! “give me you your map, your light…I gotta get there!”
As believers we have direct access to God, at all times. We can live constantly in communion with Him as we are indwelt with the Holy Spirit. But we also need to take the time to be solely focused on Him, and set aside time to Be in HIs presence with no distractions, driven by our need to BE with God.
It seems to me, a bit like being married: I am always married to John, we are joined as one in our marriage, and he is part of my thoughts, decisions, daily living. BUT this awareness is not the same thing as taking time set apart to be WITH him. Just as we need to make a deliberate effort to spend time with those we love, we must also set aside time and be deliberate and intentional in spending time WITH God.
How do you protect and deliberately seek time alone in God’s presence?
What does this time bring you?
What keeps you from setting aside this time?
- The Psalmist seeks Gods presence to give thanks! That is the first and foremost reason he must go to the mount to meet with God. This convicts me as I often go to God with my list of needs, wants, pleas and bargaining… and throw in some thanks at the end of my prayer. But the picture I get here is the Psalmist beside himself with joy and gratitude, bursting with Thanksgiving that He must express to God while in His presence.
What if our time with the Lord started that way each morning?
What if we really focused on all that we were thankful for- with joy and exuberance, regardless of what else was going on? Can you imagine the impact that would have on your mindset, heartset… and the energy it would bring into time alone with God and throughout your day?
Three simple verses that can change the tempo of our days.
A deep desire to be with God, drives us into action to do whatever it takes to bet there, and then a time that focuses on thanksgiving to God… For who He is…and that HE loves us, and for all His blessings.
Today is Day 20 of our 40 day journey.
- I want to challenge each of us to set aside time each day to seek His presence deliberately– do whatever it takes… lock yourself in the bathroom for 15 minutes, bribe the kids with extra screen time, leave for work 15 minutes early and sit in your car… We can be “find a way- make a way kind of girls!
- AND to spend the first part of this time being thankful … start a list, add to it daily, or just have a post it note that goes on your steering wheel/mirror/fridge for the day, so you will see it and be reminded throughout the days activities.
simple. straightforward. life changing.
Who is up for the challenge? Each day, post 1 thing you are grateful for either in the comments sections, the FB page, or email me. Together we can create an incredible list of “Gratitude to God” over the next 20 days.
(these will be a brief as I am still recuperating, but my hope is they will still challenge and bless you. a Great way to dig deeper is to read all of the Lectionary readings for the day, listed at the end of each post. )
Read Psalm 42 and Psalm 43 together. There are considered to be one single Psalm in some Hebrew manuscripts. How does reading them together expand their meaning and application to our lives?
a few commentaries on Psalm 43
John Calvin commentary from Christian Classics:
Daily Lectionary Readings:
2 Kings 5:1-15, Psalm 42:1-3, Psalm 43:1-4, Luke 4:24-30
If you want to read through the New Testament during Lent (about 1/2 hour a day)
Read on Day 20: John 15-end