(Psalm 27:13-14) - "I am confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord." David is speaking to his soul in these verses after declaring his heart cry: "One thing I ask of the Lord, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to seek Him in His temple." (Verse 4)
There is no simple answer to the question, "How do I enter the manifest Presence of the Lord?" We know that it was the death of Jesus on The Cross that tore the veil in front of the Holy of Holies. (Matthew 27:51) He made access for us through His willingness to go to The Cross. And from the day that we accept what Jesus did for us and confess Him as Lord and Savior, we are on a journey. The destination of our journey is mirrored by the tabernacle with its three courts: the outer court (redemption and cleansing), the holy place (provision), and the Holy of Holies (glory and Presence). Our journey is one of progressive intimacy with Him. Our goal is to meet Him face to face, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord. This occurs in the most holy place.
We must be intentional in the way we travel, willing to lay everything down for the sake of our Lord. We must be ready to run to Him as He appears to us. The book of Mark tells us about the time when Jesus healed the boy with an evil spirit. A crowd was gathered around some of the disciples. However, "as soon as they saw Jesus, they were overwhelmed with wonder and ran to greet Him." (Mark 9:15) The crowd ran to Jesus because of their sense of awe and wonder. These combined with child-like faith delight the Lord and bring us closer to Him.
It has been a tradition of The Crossing Church to set aside one week every year for the sole purpose of worshiping God and seeking His face. This is a time when we remember how unexpectedly He came to visit us in 1994. The Spirit of God was poured upon us in a mighty way. In unity we gather together to declare the wonders of God's love and cry out for Him to come and dwell with us. We set aside last week to seek the Lord. One particular song seemed to capture the cry of our hearts. It is called "Here As In Heaven," by Elevation Worship:
"Overflow in this place; fill our hearts with Your love, Your love surrounds us. You're the reason we came to encounter Your love, Your love surrounds us. Spirit of God fall fresh on us, we need Your Presence. Your kingdom come Your will be done here as in heaven. Spirit of God fall fresh on us; we need Your Presence. Your kingdom come Your will be done here as in heaven."
Deep down inside we know that the Lord has more for us. He told His disciples that there would be more after He ascended to heaven and sent His Holy Spirit. Cultivating His Presence has become a priority through our worship and meditating on His Word. Nothing can compare to an encounter with the Living God. The journey continues. Only His Presence can satisfy!
Joan E. Mathias