DEVOTIONAL BY BILLY GRAHAM – HOPE FOR EACH DAY
Enjoying God’s Presence
In Your presence is fullness of joy. – PSALM 16:11
Have you ever watched a young couple communicate their love for each other without even saying a word? Maybe you have experienced it yourself. Every glance, every touch, every smile conveys love. People deeply in love find absolute bliss simply being in each other’s presence.
In the same way, simply being in the presence of God brings us great joy. It happens as we listen to Him speak in His Word; it happens as we pray. But it also happens as we simply enjoy His presence—meditating on His goodness, delighting in the beauty of His creation, rejoicing in the life of a new baby or the surprise of an unexpected blessing. The Bible says, “Be still, and know that I am God” (Ps. 46:10).
Some day we will be in His presence forever; the Bible says, “God Himself will be with them” (Rev. 21:3). What joy that will be! But in the meantime, delight in His presence right now, for He is with you every hour of the day.
DEVOTIONAL BY CHARLES STANLEY – ON HOLY GROUND
Sitting Before the Lord
King David went in and sat before the LORD; and he said: “Who am I, O Lord GOD? And what is my house, that You have brought me this far?” – 2 Samuel 7:18
Are you confused? Unsure of what the next step might be? Anxious about the future? Perplexed over the problems that still beset you?
Perhaps the time is right to meditate on God’s Word. God’s Word is wisdom for your uncertainty, peace for your anxiety, comfort in times of trouble and turmoil. Meditating on the Scriptures is much like enjoying a good meal. How much would you savor the flavor and nourishment of your favorite food if you placed it on your fork, put it in your mouth, and then immediately took it out again?
When we meditate on God’s Word, we taste its rich goodness and receive its energizing life. God’s truths are absorbed into the inner man. They are no longer hollow or superficial. There is nothing complex about biblical meditation. Get out your Bible, and locate some Scriptures that are relevant to your need. Then ask God two questions: “Lord, what are You saying here?” and “Lord, what are You saying to me through this passage of Scripture?”
The answer may come quickly. You may need to wait, but know that God hears you and will answer you. Apply what you know to be true, and lean on God’s sufficiency. He will sustain you and see you through your problem.
DEVOTIONAL FROM JESUS CALLING – SARAH YOUNG
Blessed are those who have learned to acclaim you, who walk in the light of your presence, O LORD. – PSALM 89 : 15
Be Open To My Presence
Bring Me your mind for rest and renewal. Let Me infuse My Presence into your thoughts. As your mind stops racing, your body relaxes and you regain awareness of Me. This awareness is vital to your spiritual well-being; it is your lifeline, spiritually speaking.
There are actually more than four dimensions in this world where you live. In addition to the three dimensions of space and the one of time, there is the dimension of openness to My Presence. This dimension transcends the others, giving you glimpses of heaven while you still reside on earth. This was part of My original design for mankind. Adam and Eve used to walk with Me in the garden, before their expulsion from Eden. I want you to walk with Me in the garden of your heart, where I have taken up permanent residence.
As Jesus was on his way, the crowds almost crushed him. 43 And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years,[c] but no one could heal her. 44 She came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak, and immediately her bleeding stopped.
45 “Who touched me?” Jesus asked.
When they all denied it, Peter said, “Master, the people are crowding and pressing against you.”
46 But Jesus said, “Someone touched me; I know that power has gone out from me.”
47 Then the woman, seeing that she could not go unnoticed, came trembling and fell at his feet. In the presence of all the people, she told why she had touched him and how she had been instantly healed. 48 Then he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace.”
Keep me safe, my God, for in you I take refuge.
2 I say to the Lord, “You are my Lord; apart from you I have no good thing.” 3 I say of the holy people who are in the land, “They are the noble ones in whom is all my delight.” 4 Those who run after other gods will suffer more and more. I will not pour out libations of blood to such gods or take up their names on my lips.
5 Lord, you alone are my portion and my cup; you make my lot secure. 6 The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance. 7 I will praise the Lord, who counsels me; even at night my heart instructs me. 8 I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.
9 Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will rest secure, 10 because you will not abandon me to the realm of the dead, nor will you let your faithful[b] one see decay. 11 You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.
DEVOTIONAL BY OSWALD CHAMBERS – MY UTMOST FOR HIS HIGHEST
Dependent on God’s Presence
Those who wait on the Lord . . . shall walk and not faint —Isaiah 40:31
There is no thrill for us in walking, yet it is the test for all of our steady and enduring qualities. To “walk and not faint” is the highest stretch possible as a measure of strength. The word walk is used in the Bible to express the character of a person— “. . . John . . . looking at Jesus as He walked. . . said, ’Behold the Lamb of God!’ ” (John 1:35-36). There is nothing abstract or obscure in the Bible; everything is vivid and real. God does not say, “Be spiritual,” but He says, “Walk before Me. . .” (Genesis 17:1).
When we are in an unhealthy condition either physically or emotionally, we always look for thrills in life. In our physical life this leads to our efforts to counterfeit the work of the Holy Spirit; in our emotional life it leads to obsessions and to the destruction of our morality; and in our spiritual life, if we insist on pursuing only thrills, on mounting up “with wings like eagles” (Isaiah 40:31), it will result in the destruction of our spirituality.
Having the reality of God’s presence is not dependent on our being in a particular circumstance or place, but is only dependent on our determination to keep the Lord before us continually. Our problems arise when we refuse to place our trust in the reality of His presence. The experience the psalmist speaks of— “We will not fear, even though . . .” (Psalm 46:2)— will be ours once we are grounded on the truth of the reality of God’s presence, not just a simple awareness of it, but an understanding of the reality of it. Then we will exclaim, “He has been here all the time!” At critical moments in our lives it is necessary to ask God for guidance, but it should be unnecessary to be constantly saying, “Oh, Lord, direct me in this, and in that.” Of course He will, and in fact, He is doing it already! If our everyday decisions are not according to His will, He will press through them, bringing restraint to our spirit. Then we must be quiet and wait for the direction of His presence.