TO CHEW ON: “One thing have I desired of the LORD,
That I will 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 of His temple.” Psalm 27:4
In this month of examining our lives, taking stock of where we are and where we want to go (spiritually, physically, socially, and in our work) the “One thing” declaration of David's has a familiar ring. Without the prompting of a life coach, he has formulated his priorities, summed up in the flag-plant: “One thing have I desired of the LORD … / That I may dwell in the house of the LORD / All the days of my life.”
I’m going to assume that in his statement, the “house of the LORD” wasn’t literal—that he didn’t want to move into the temple physically and live there for the rest of his life. So if not that, what?
Some things David may have had in mind when he made this one thing wish:
- That he would continually sense and be aware of God’s presence.
- That he would be surrounded, wherever he was, with a sense of God’s beauty. The word “holy” comes to mind here—that word that means “set apart, separate.” In the atmosphere of God’s beauty, perhaps he felt separated from from the ugliness, damage, pain, and hurt of sin.
- That he would live with a sense of being in God’s family with its legacy and inheritance.
When we’re in someone’s house we catch glimpses of their experiences, history and what they value. Recently, for example, we visited friends who have worked for Wycliffe. On their walls were craft pieces depicting life in Asia. Also there, we saw photos of their daughter who recently died of cancer, and a quilt hanging made of her T-shirt fronts with their diverse sayings.
Similarly when we live intimately with God we remind ourselves of His story, of the way He has designed life to work best, and we choose to fill the atmosphere with good things--the fragrance of kind encouraging words, the music of praise, worship, and devotion, declarations that are positive and faith-filled.
- That he would always have a sense of God’s availability to advise him and direct his way, so he could “...inquire in His temple.”
This psalm prompts me to ask, what “One thing” would I desire of the Lord this year? What about you? Would it in any way resemble to “dwell in the house of the Lord?”
PRAYER: Dear Father, it is good for me to pare my wishes down to “one thing.” Please give me more days of living in Your house. Amen.
Unless otherwise noted all Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.