As believers and students of the word, we know that all of us are sinners in need of God’s grace. This means that, apart from Jesus, there’s no one to whom we can point and follow as a perfect example. Having said that, there are a lot of things we can find to emulate in the lives of spiritual giants like David.
Today’s Psalm makes me envious, but in a good way. The intimacy he had with his Lord is something we need to cultivate, and it utilizes some really eloquent poetry in order to express it. Of course, the circumstances behind the Psalm were pretty common in David’s life: He’s surrounded by enemies, the situation looks hopeless, and he’s expressing hope that God will rescue him, and at the same time hopes he does it soon.
But there’s one verse here that really strikes me as especially profound. If a Genie popped out of a bottle and offered you your heart’s greatest desire, what would it be? Most people would say money, fame, sex, popularity, or something else that's here today and gone tomorrow. Christians, especially the more mature ones, would say that they desire to be closer to the Lord in intimate fellowship, or to please him better.
But David asked for something that most of us would never think to request. Look at verse 4 and read it again carefully:
“One thing I ask from the Lord,
this only do I seek:
that I may dwell in the house of the Lord
all the days of my life,
to gaze on the beauty of the Lord
and to seek him in his temple."
Again, he longs for intimate communion (“dwell in the house of the Lord. . .gaze upon [his] beauty”), but there’s something more. Included in this “one thing” he would ask of the Lord is that he would be able to “seek him in his temple.”
Why would he wish this for himself? For one thing, he knew that if we seek him, we’ll find him eventually. Of course most of us are familiar with Jesus’ promise that those who seek will find, but even Moses promised the same thing: “[if] you seek the Lord your God, you will find him if you seek him with all your heart and with all your soul.”
And we should know that the seeking is a blessing from him in the sense of a gift as well. The Bible's very clear that on our own, we'd never seek him. That bears repeating, since it’s so important: On our own, we'd never seek him. If we are seeking him, it’s because he’s been seeking us first.
But he's so good that even in the process of seeking him there's a blessing to be had.
Now for your enjoyment, here's "The Lord is my Light" by Eden's Bridge.
For today’s prayer, I’d recommend you read one more time through the Psalm and pick out one verse to incorporate into prayer. For example, you might say something like “Father, I’m so glad that I will see your goodness in the land of the living. I’m going to take heart and wait for you.”