“Lift up your heads, O you gates;
Be lifted up, you ancient doors,
That the King of Glory may come in.
Who is this King of Glory?
The Lord strong and mighty,
The Lord mighty in battle.”
Psalm 24: 7-8
On Monday I came home from work and exhausted, collapsed on the couch for what I had planned would be 20 minutes… 20 became 30 and when 45 minutes had passed, I suddenly realised how pathetic and second-rate my thoughts had become – and the Holy Spirit reminded me of something spoken at church the night before; “Nobody sins in the presence of God”. I got up and found an old worship CD and soon found strength and rest in God’s presence.
A friend from school bbm’d me with questions about work and somehow an incredible conversation opened up wherein I was able to encourage her and simply allow God to pour out into her heart through me. This conversation would not have happened if I had indulged in another 15 minutes on the couch.
Such a simple example, but such a poignant lesson. Have been humbled by the realisation that we are called to seek God’s face with pure hearts and clean hands (Psalm 24:6,4) – we are called to seek God’s Heart and dwell intimately in His Presence. As we become deliberate in breaking into the sweet spot of surrendered worship of Him, we find the Strength, Rest, Joy and Freedom to become everything God has planned for us to be… and filled with all His Goodness, it is a simple consequence that we will naturally begin to pour out that same Goodness into those around us – its the Overflow. I think sometimes we’re living in a deprived state of Lack – not from God withholding His Goodness, but from us not seeking to receive. We end up living (and striving) in limited amounts of Strength and Love and find we grow exhausted and follow a dangerous path towards bewilderment and hurt. We need to live (and love) from a Place of Overflow – that its the excess that is pouring out to everyone around us because we cannot contain everything that God has poured into our own hearts.
How do we enter the Place of Overflow? We worship. We humble ourselves before God and seek His heart, simply to adore Him and delight in Him. Psalm 24 promises “blessing and vindication” for the generation who seek God with clean hands, a pure heart and who do not lift their souls to idols. We come before God with an honesty and openness that leaves nothing hidden; we worship in surrendered abandonment – joyful vulnerability. The tricky thing about this verse is that we are so easily deceived – idols are sneaky little things that manage to worm themselves into significant places while we’re not looking; much like weeds growing in a garden unnoticed during winter. Despite having had an awesome revelation on Monday, by Friday I was once again repenting for getting it so wrong. My idol? God’s beautiful promises for the next season! In the space of a few days I had managed to shift my focus from the Truth & Provider to the Situation & Promise. How silly. How very easy.
Again, I was reminded of the importance to deliberately break into God’s Presence through worship – and to never lose sight of the battle we’re called to fight against the enemy. He will use every tactic to delay and destroy the promises God has for us – and too often we allow him that opportunity. There have been some very specific Words and Promises spoken over my church and people within the church, yet we’re not seeing it fulfilled. In this week, God has shown me very clearly how He is waiting – almost hovering above us – to release the Abundance of His Goodness, yet because we are not pressing into His Presence through worship (seeking His Heart and not His Hand), we have hindered the hand of God. He is unable to give, because we are not ready to receive.
There is a call for God’s People to stir themselves and seek Him; to worship Him in Spirit and in Truth – to rise above circumstances and this apathetic state of Waiting. My prayer is that we may become a generation that seeks God’s face simply to adore Him and in so doing, become a Blessed Generation living in the Place of the Overflow – because then we really will become a light in the darkness, reaching out in Love and Power.