“(4)One thing I have desired of the Lord, that will I 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 inquire in His temple. (5)For in the time of trouble He shall hide me in his pavilion; in the secret place of His tabernacle He shall hide me; He shall set me high upon a rock.
(6)And now my head shall be lifted up above my enemies all around me; Therefore I will offer sacrifices of joy (joyous shouts) in His tabernacle; I will sing, yes, I will sing praises to the Lord.”
Psalms 27:4-6
We all desire many things, each day, but there is ONE thing I am confident to say we all desire… peace. Maybe your peace you desire is actual calm peace. Maybe your peace is the peace to not be afraid. Maybe your peace is the peace of health instead of Illness. Maybe your peace is the peace of security in the midst of financial turmoil. Maybe your peace is the peace of quiet from the anxiety/torment constantly spinning in your mind. Regardless, I believe we all seek peace.
The rest of verse 4 talks about dwelling in the house of the Lord all the days of your life. It’s easy to read this and think heaven or even a church building. But when Jesus died on the cross, he moved the house of the Lord from a physical place to a place in your heart. The Lords house is inside of you, that’s where Holy Spirit lives. Dwell also means to pause. The technical definition is “a slight regular pause in the motion of a machine.” Regular. Pause. Don’t you feel like a machine in life sometimes? Constantly moving. Constantly working. Constantly fretting. Constantly striving for…
So verse 4 is talking about in order to gain the one thing we desire of the Lord, you must dwell (pause) regularly in the presence of the Lord (that’s the physical house of the Lord turned into the presence that lives inside of you).
In my journey with the Lord from religion, I’ve struggled to understand how to have balance with one thing in my life: Regular pausing. Dwelling. Religion oftentimes encourages daily “quiet times” with the Lord, sacrificing time in order to check off the “devotion of the day” with the Lord. If you aren’t careful, it can become a check box on your list of things to do everyday to please the Lord and follow His law. When I was set free from religion and law, I learned walking with the Lord daily isn’t a check box of to do lists in order to please the Lord. Just living and being His child pleases Him and if that’s all you were to ever do is just BE with Him, that makes Him happy. I learned the Lord would never be “angry” or “disappointed” with me. I learned that he no longer saw or kept points of my sin nature (or my lack of quiet times) because I was living under His new nature. I was put off, and still am at times, by anything religious. I stay as far away from it as I can because I know it’s just a trap of the enemy. But in doing so, I got one thing mistaken. Having quiet time with the Lord doesn’t have to be a check box to do list kind of thing. Living in my newfound freedom I didn’t HAVE to set aside time everyday to please God. I NEED to set aside time each day, not for the Lord, but for me. Not to “please the Lord and be a good Christian” but to fill my cup to overflow. To be able to serve the Lord each day in joy and love, and not frustration and anxiety. Like the story of Martha and Mary in the Bible, I found myself putting “service to the Lord” as a greater priority than “sitting with the Lord”. I was a Martha.
And if you read that story in the Bible we find that the Lord doesn’t condemn Martha for having a to-do list or a desire to serve. He doesn’t say that the to do list isn’t important, He just says it’s not the best thing for her right now. Jesus knows us and He knows there are things we must do everyday. Mary chose the best thing for that moment in time. I assume she knew that if she sat before the Lord, paused, dwelled in His Presence first, that all things would fall into place during her SERVICE to the lord. Then I realized, both are important. One is not greater than the other. Service to the Lord and Sitting with the Lord go hand in hand. When sitting comes before service, however, service is no longer a burden but a joy.
Do you notice the pause between verse 5 & 6? Then verse 6 picks up with “And now…” that is after you’ve taken time to dwell in the presence of the Lord, behold His beauty (the goodness of His nature), and even inquire in his temple (ask of Holy Spirit). So after all this, you’ll find the freedom of the one thing you desired. Peace. And from that peace comes literal joyous shouts and praises to the Lord. Following Jesus and being full of Holy Spirit is not a solitary, quiet-led life, hands folded in lap on Sunday, quiet amens from the pew, kind of life. It’s a joyous shout. It’s a praise dance. Its loud and fiery. Its opportunities to learn and grow more. It’s service from a joyful and filled up heart.
So if you, like me, are struggling today with finding time to dwell. If your to do list is longer than your “time set aside” to pause, take one thing off your list that can pushed to another time. Purposely choose to pause, not because it’s expected of you but because your spirit needs to be filled up so that you can continue to serve the Lord in your home, in your family, in your church, in your job, in your friends, in your life. Be encouraged friend 🩵 The lord isn’t disappointed in you. He is enthralled with you and He knows you need His pause.

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