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The One Thing in Life

Though an army encamp against me, my heart shall not fear; though war rise up against me, yet I will be confident. One thing I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: to live in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to inquire in his temple. For he will hide me in his shelter in the day of trouble; he will conceal me under the cover of his tent; he will set me high on a rock.
Psalm 27:3-5

What do you sense the Lord saying to you in this difficult time of 9/11 memories, COVID, social unrest, political instability, and the fall of Afghanistan to the Taliban? As you pray, “Speak Lord, your servant is listening”, what are you hearing God say to you?

Replaying in my mind the horrors of 9/11 and then watching the news prompted me to ask God what He was saying to me: “Lord, what do you want me to do as your child, as an ambassador of your Kingdom, as your agent for hope?”

That was when my mind turned to God’s Word and to the single-minded David in the midst of trouble and war. Note in today’s scripture from Psalm 27 that David writes “though an army encamp against me” and “war rise up against me.” A man who fearlessly faced down giants and put armies to flight says he faces “the day of trouble.”

I think that what David does as he confronts trouble is a clue to why Scripture calls him “a man after God’s own heart” (Acts 13:22). David is a man who has done much and sinned much but is insistent on keeping the main thing the main thing. David has boiled all of life down to one single priority: “One thing I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after.” Over the course of a life of many pressures and demands, David has one thing he ever strives for: “to live in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to inquire in his temple.”

Of course, David writes long before his son Solomon had constructed the temple, or, house of the Lord. David is longing for something different than spending his life in a physical building. David writes about his consuming passion to live in constant, growing fellowship with God. This is David’s life ambition, the one goal for which he “asked of the LORD” and is ever determined to “seek after.” Note the wisdom of David’s verbs in using the perfect with the future: David has asked God for this one thing but will continue to seek after it all his life. He wants to be enthralled with the “beauty of the LORD” and to center on His goodness, grace, mercy, and love. Living daily in the presence of God, David wants to “inquire in his temple.” He longs to learn God’s wisdom and His ways with His people. David is no shirker or recluse from the world, but a person who wants his life to be anchored and growing in communion with God.

As I ask God what He is saying to me in these difficult times, I hear Him telling me to seek David’s “one thing”: to live in constant, growing fellowship with God. Period!

A fellow traveler,

Tim

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