He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.” Psalm 91:1 & 2 I am convinced that it is not about where you are, it’s about where you dwell. You can be in the flames and not be burned (Dan 3:23). You can be in a den of lions and not be touched (Dan 6:16). You can be free praising God in the innermost prison cell (Acts 16:25). You can be at peace sleeping in the most violent of storms (Matt 8:24). You can be in the belly of the whale at the lowest place in your life and still find peace, hope and restoration (Jonah 1:17). I am convinced that it is not about where we are, it’s about where we dwell.
There was a defining moment in my life recently. I was in a worship service and asking God to speak to me, give me guidance, direction, peace, joy and more of His Spirit.... and I remember the Lord telling me “just be”. It hit me like a brick wall. I don’t know how many times I have come to the Lord desiring to get, get, receive, receive and obtain more of Him and more from Him. It’s as if this whole worship thing was more about me receiving from Him then Him receiving from me. BAM! The word the Lord had told me was “Just be with Me”. I’m telling you it looked really unproductive, but it was the most powerful worship experience of my life. Everyone around me was jumping up and down, dancing, yelling and singing out beautiful harmonies and my heart began to break, I just stood there looking into the eyes of my Savior, not saying anything or doing anything, just being with Him. I had missed what it truly meant to worship Him. For me the emphasis started to turn more on the atmosphere, the music, the postures, the appearance, the image, the song choice, the hype of the people, the feel of the bass, the dim of the lights... It’s not as if I was a fake Christian, I just forgot my first love.
Last night I was praying, and I remember I was crying out to God and to be honest my words really reflected Psalms 88. I remember weeping before the Lord and He reminded me of the time He told me to “Just Be with Him”. It’s in these moments that everything else fades. Where it’s just Him and me and nothing else matters. It’s in these moments where I don’t want anything from Him. Where there is no hidden agenda for coming to Him. My heart just begins to rest in His faithfulness, His love and presence. He whispers to me that “I am His delight” and that He is for me and with me. It's in these moments where His presence is worth more then His words, where His presence is enough. It's in these times that I am truly alive and it's not something that I can only experience in a quite place, it's taking over my everyday life so that at anytime, at any moment I have this instant access with Him. It's not something we have to work to obtain, it's the relationship He wants to have with all of us today.
In Psalms 88 we see a person who is in a dark place, who hasn’t received the answers he wants from God. A person who is bitter, lonely and in need. He has let his storm consume him. He is suffering in his flames. His prison has silenced his praise and bound him of all joy, hope and life. His emotions are driven and tossed by his physical state. He chooses to dwell in and on the things that are of the earth instead of the Creator of the earth. He chooses to dwell in the shadow of death instead of the shadow of the Almighty. He fills himself with the food of defilement, bitterness and destruction instead of the bread that comes from heaven. I am convinced that it is not about where you are, but about where you dwell. Return to your first love.
The place the man in Ps. 88 describes is the same place Paul was in when He wrote 2 Timothy (a prison, alone with no one to help him, everyone had deserted him). Yet Paul chooses to dwell in the shelter of the Most High. Because His life was in Christ!
Today the Lord will give you strength to stand in whatever circumstance. Not only do we dwell in Him, but the maker of Heaven and Earth, whom all authority has been given DWELLS IN US! Hallelujah. Today, let us come before the Lord and just desire to dwell in Him. Just "BE" with Him. Let the Peace of God rule in your hearts, guard your minds in Christ Jesus. His presence will sustain you in all circumstances, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want...[Philippians 4:11-13]
Lord we ask that our eyes would not be on the carnal things of this world. The things we see with our eyes, the things we hear with our ears or feel with our hands. Let us not be shaken by perishable things, but let us rest in the one who is unshakable and imperishable. To you be all our devotion, adoration and attention. We dwell in you today, Amen!