Archive | March 2012

Psalm 16:8, 11

“I have set the Lord continually before me.  Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.  You will make known to me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; in Your right hand there are pleasures forever.” (NASB)

The Lord God is before me in the morning, coaxing me out of bed.  God is before me as I read His word.  God is before me as I tend to the dog and smiles as he wags his tail.  God is before me as I exercise, coaching me.  God is before me as I get ready for the day, reminding and suggesting.  God is at my right hand as I drive and God is before me making the way safe.  God is before me on the train and bus, and at my right hand enjoying the ride with me.  God is before me at work giving me ideas.  God is before me as I interact with people, so as I see their face, I also see God.  God sits across from me whenever and wherever I eat.  God is before me as I do my chores around the house, reminding me of my blessings.  God is always before me preparing the way.  God is always before me, but I must continually set Him there.  I must recognize Him there, acknowledge Him there, look for Him there, submit to Him there and follow Him wherever He leads. 

Set.  Set the table – put the plates and silverware in their proper places.  We set up, set down, set in place, set in stone, and set our hearts on something or someone.  All the expressions denote putting something or someone in a particular place.  So I set the Lord before me – I take God and place Him in a position of honor.  Not just once, but continually.  Every time my circumstances change, I must set the Lord before me, each moment making a conscious choice to place God before me.  Not away from me or behind me or beside me, but before me.  God is the first person I see.  Whenever I am talking with someone, God is between us – He has to be if He’s before me.  If I continually set God before me, then during my entire conversation with that other person, I don’t “see” them, I “see” God.  I see them through God’s eyes.  When I’m talking with them, it’s as if I’m talking with God.  I can’t insult or hurt them without going through God first.  Wouldn’t that be a big help in confrontation?

God is at my right hand.  The God of the universe is holding my right hand.  Think about how safe that feels!  Me, a little child holding the hand of my big, strong, safe God.  Because He’s so big and powerful, I will not be shaken or rattled or disturbed – as long as I hold on to His hand.  I don’t have to be afraid or angry, because God is at my right hand.  He will protect me.  I don’t have to be upset about anything and if I am, then I must have let go of His hand. 

God will make known to me the path of life – the well-travelled road of life.  Obeying and pleasing God, serving Him and His people, advancing His kingdom.  God will make known to me where the path is and isn’t.  How?  Isaiah 30:21.  “You will hear a voice behind you saying ‘This is the way, walk in it’ whenever you turn to the right or the left.”  God will speak to me from behind.  So God is before me, at my right hand and behind me.  But it’s hardest to hear someone from behind, so I must listen carefully, especially when people are in front trying to get me to follow them and people are at my side chattering away, perhaps trying to distract me from my purpose.   I must learn to ignore the other voices and listen for God’s voice, softly speaking and telling me where to go and what to do and how to live the abundant life promised in John 10:10.

In God’s presence there is fullness of joy.  God is always present, but I must recognize and acknowledge and seek His presence.  I must allow God’s presence to be real and active.  When I do, there is fullness of joy.  Not just joy – it doesn’t say “in Your presence there is joy” – it says there is FULLNESS of joy.  Not some joy or a little bit of joy or even a lot of joy, but FULLNESS of joy.  All I could ever want and then some.   Shaken together, pressed down and overflowing.  No joy lacking.  All the joy there is.  Fullness of joy in God’s presence.  It shouldn’t be hard to be in God’s presence.  After all, I’m setting God before me, God is holding my right hand and God is behind me, whispering encouragement and directions in my ear.  I just need to make sure I don’t sneak out to my left!

In God’s right hand there are pleasures forever.  Picture it – If God is at my right hand, then God’s left hand is holding my right hand.  That means His right hand is free – free to release pleasures before me as we walk, just as a flower girl sprinkles petals or a farmer sows seed.  Pleasures that God and I can experience, share and enjoy together as we walk and talk and live.  A butterfly.  A rainbow.  The laughter of a child.  Pleasures I will miss if I’m looking back or having a pity party.  Pleasures I will miss if God has to use both hands to shake some sense into me.  Pleasures forever.  Not temporary pleasures or short lived pleasures, but pleasures forever.  Not just for now, or for a lifetime, but for eternity. 

I set the Lord continually before me and get pleasures forever.

How has God spoken to you through this revealing?