As 2009 begins I really want to challenge and hopefully encourage your hearts with one question. What is the one thing you desire from the Lord this year?
This week the kids are at Phillip's parents while we take care of some much needed home improvement "stuff". I have spent 3 1/2 days painting over the battle ship gray trim in this house that we're remodelling. ( I shared with some of you that if I were to put the strokes I painted in a one inch straight line I'd be in Iowa by now!) It is a monotonous task, but it has given me the blessed privilege of meditating on God's Word all week and of praying specifically for many of my friends.
The one verse that continually keeps coming to my mind is from Psalm 27. "One thing I have asked from the Lord, this thing I shall seek; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to meditate in His temple."
This week I am to asking myself, "What is the one thing I desire - honestly? Is it this - "to dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold His beauty and to meditate in His temple"? Is my "one thing" an eternal desire or an earthly desire?
David's "one thing" was an earnest passion to dwell in the house of the Lord forever. The "one thing" he would ask of God, the thing he sought after the most was this: "to dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of his life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to meditate in His temple."
I am, by nothing but the sheer grace of God, finding myself longing more and more for heaven. I am longing for and at times aching for it in the eternal reality of actually being there. I want to behold the face of my God and Savior. I want to truly worship in His presence. I long to fellowship with Him and with the saints - and all without any of the encumbrances of sin. Can we even fathom what that will be like? No sin to affect us and weigh us down! I anxiously await the true and tangible outworking of my salvation in heaven but I'm also longing for it more and more in this life - "Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven."
This year, will you pray with me that God would so work in each of us that our "one thing" to ask of God and our "one thing" to seek would be to dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of this life? This year, I am asking God to make seeking Him through the simple means of grace the one thing I seek above all else. For in this life, these are the things (the preached Word, the sacraments, prayer, and fellowship with believers) where I will "behold the beauty of the Lord."
The more we behold the beauty of the Lord, the more full we will be to serve our husbands, raise our children, be a true friend, and be the salt and light that this fallen world so desperately needs. Jesus echoes the thoughts of this one thing in Matthew 6 when He reminds us to "seek first His kingdom and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you." Here again is the "one thing" we should seek!
David in all earnestness prays for constant communion with His Lord. Christ commands us to seek first His kingdom and His righteousness. Is this the desire of our hearts? May God in His infinite mercy make it to be so and may we see a little more of heaven on earth in 2009! Happy New Year my friends - know that I love each of you dearly.
With one foot there and one here,