Wednesday, January 23, 2013

January 23 - Longing for the Living God

Today's Reading:
2 Samuel 7:1-8:18
1 Corinthians 1:1-17
Psalm 84:1-7
Click on Text Link to Read Online

Focus Verses:
Psalm 84:1-2,10,12

1 How lovely is your dwelling place, O LORD Almighty! 2 My soul yearns, even faints, for the courts of the LORD; my heart and my flesh cry out for the living God. - - - 10 Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked. - - - 12 O LORD Almighty, blessed is the man who trusts in you.

Psalm 84 expresses how wonderful it was to worship the Lord at Solomon's Temple. It was so beautiful, and God's presence was so tangible, that reverence and praise came easily (v.4). Even the trip to Jerusalem was a meaningful experience for those who traveled to worship at the Temple. It reminded them of the faith journeys made by their forefathers Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (vv.5-7). Once they arrived and joined into the Temple worship experience, their faith was bolstered. One day of this experience was so encouraging and valuable to the worshipers they felt it was worth more than a thousand days doing anything else.

Response and Action:
Gathering with others to worship and praise God should be a beautiful and encouraging experience for me. It should be something I look forward to with joyful anticipation. As a follower of Christ, I want to do my part to make worship a beautiful and encouraging experience for others. I want my church family, my worship community, to be so filled with God's presence and beauty that people look forward to being together. I want time spent with my church family to be so sweet that it's better than a thousand days elsewhere.

O God, give me a heart that is quick to worship you. Give me a love for your church and an appreciation for time spent with your people. Help my church family to seek you wholeheartedly, and to become a beautiful and attractive witness of your grace and presence. Help me, as part of that community, to be an encouragement and joy to others. Through Christ, I pray. Amen.

Spiritual Formation Verses: Hebrews 10:24-25
24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. 25 Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

The Purpose of Man: Designed to Worship
by A. W. Tozer

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