“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” (Psalm 27:4)
How are you dwelling these days? Has anyone ever asked you that? Haha me neither.
All joking aside, I believe David, who was called a “man after God’s own heart”, had boiled down his desires to one thing. Well, it’s actually three but the Bible didn’t say he was good at math. I kid, but I believe the word “dwell” encapsulates the other two. To dwell means to live. How do we live in the house of the Lord when we are stuck here on this earth? Maybe that seems like a silly question, but it has taken me many years to answer it and I believe I have a lot more to learn!
So how do we dwell? Well, to start, we need to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord. Maybe that’s hard for you. I have found the Psalms as a great way to do this. Or sometimes I walk outside and see the beauty of creation (although sometimes a bit of a struggle in the concrete Jungle I live in) and turn my heart towards the one who created it. Sometimes a worship song can help or even a non-worship song sometimes leads me to turn my eyes on Him. Sometimes I find the catalyst is my wife, not only her outward beauty but her inner beauty as well. You can use practically anything as long as you turn your gaze to Him.
The last thing is “to seek him in his temple.” Now, I’m not just talking about a “quiet time” where you read a little scripture or a devotional and pray, “Lord, thank you for this day…”, and a few other small arrows at heaven hoping God will hear you. Now I am not talking saying that Scripture is not important. On the contrary, it can be vital to helping you accomplish this. But it’s not just getting knowledge in our heads but using Scripture to help illuminate the beauty of God. I am also not saying prayer is not important. It is also critical but maybe we do too much talking when we pray.
What I am talking about is sitting in silence, closing your eyes, and turning your gaze upon Him and just sit. If you are struggling to be quiet in your mind maybe turn on a worship song and let the words lead you into the very presence of God and once you are there, worship him.
Try it out! For many of you, you have a lot more free time on your hands so you might as well use it to “be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” Get alone somewhere and ask the Lord to quiet your mind. Remove all the thoughts of things you need to do today. Turn your gaze toward him and seek him in his temple. And once you are there, just sit. Or in the words of David, “Dwell in the house of the Lord”
“For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling. He will hide me in the shelter of his tabernacle and set me high upon a rock” (Psalm 27:5)