What brings you joy? Not something that brings a smile to your face, or makes you feel happy for a few moments. I’m talking about deep, intimate, soul soaking joy. The kind of joy that doesn’t fade when you have a hard day, you don’t sleep well, or your patience is depleted. The type that overflows into every aspect of your life and is so apparent to others, they can’t resist asking you, “Why are you so delighted?”
Are you delighted? It’s an awkward question to ask, isn’t it? Most of us can’t begin to comprehend the enormity of true joy. In Psalm 16, King David proclaims, “in the presence of God we experience the fullness of joy!” We know what it means to feel happy, excited, blessed, and even use the word joyful—but to experience the FULLNESS of joy? There is only one place to receive this intimate jubilation—to fully rejoice and be glad—and that place is sitting in the magnificent presence of our God. But how do we do this when we are in this world?
Scripture proclaims God is everywhere – omnipresent. God’s power is limitless – omnipotent. Due to our circumstances, our sin, our faults, we begin to think He can’t see us or hear us. And if He can’t see us, then how can we possibly sit in His presence? How can we feel the joy He gives? We walk day to day as if our needs exceed His abilities. Don’t buy those lies! In truth, He is with every single one of us and nothing is too hard for Him.
In Psalm 89, Ethan the Ezrahite – a cymbal player and songwriter in King David’s court – sang these words:
Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne; Mercy and truth go before You. Blessed are the people who know the joyful sound! Lord, they walk in the light of Your face. In Your name they rejoice all the day, And by Your righteousness they are exalted. (Psalm 89:14-16 NASB)
When we walk in the light of His face—His presence—we know the “fullness of joy!” Sitting in His presence isn’t just for special occasions. It is for us every day. God says we will find Him when we seek Him with all of our hearts. We can call out to Him and be still and know He is our God. His presence comforts us in sadness, brings hope in our despair, and where there is darkness – His amazing light shines upon us!
Do you seek the face of your Savior? Have you felt the light of His presence upon you? When every piece of your soul aches, and you cannot take one more step—just dwell. Allow yourself to be immersed in His word and wait upon Him. Just as Psalm 139 tells us, we were formed and knitted together in our mother’s womb. God knows every part of us and there is nowhere we can hide from Him. We cannot flee from His presence!
I believe one of the most tender stories of seeking the Lord’s presence, is found in the gospel of Matthew. This scene takes place after the Lord Jesus was crucified, died, and was placed in the tomb. You see Mary Magdalene and the other Mary, yearning to see Him, ran to anoint His body. But when they arrived, the heavy stone which had been placed to seal the entrance, had been rolled away. Their Savior was not there; but an angel spoke to them:
But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here, for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and behold, he is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him. See, I have told you.” (Matthew 28:5-6 ESV)
See Him they did! As they sought the face of Jesus, they found Him.
And behold, Jesus met them and said, “Greetings!” And they came up and took hold of his feet and worshiped him. (Matthew 28:9 ESV)
Not even death could stop Him. Cling to Him, sisters! Take hold of His feet, worship Him and walk in the light of His face. Let’s stop visiting Him and start dwelling in Him—He is Light of the World.
Holding Fast to Hope,