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The Beauty of the Lord

July 25th, 2013

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.

Psalm 27:4

David found courage by looking away from his own selfish plans and focusing on the beauty of the Lord. He realized that the highest experience a human life may have, the highest attainment we can achieve, is not our own plans but intimacy and friendship with God.

We often fight our personal battles for our own glory, never asking whether we deserve to win, whether we are on the right side or not. We are too selfish and selfishness demotes a man, it removes his dignity. When we are not living life for God’s glory, when our own selfish goals and plans are all we have, then fears overtake us, fears and pride and lusts erupt uncontrollable in our minds.

David gives us a great example of the matter of first importance in facing our fears: become a human being who is on God’s side, who is a truly moral, righteous, good person. Do you want to win your battles? Then make sure the battles you fight are God’s battles and that you fight them His way for His glory.

The first thing you have to do is to die! You have to experience spiritual death and complete surrender to the purposes of God. You have to give up your right to yourself, to your plans, to your purposes, to your lusts and pride. You must pick up a cross and follow after Jesus, and that cross is not just the little things that annoy you each day, the little troubles you face. That cross is the instrument of your death. You must die, so that Christ must live. But then you will see the beauty of the Lord, and I assure you the beauty of the Lord far exceeds the sweetness of human and personal victory.

I have seen women fight over husbands, thinking that this man will bring them a better life. I have seen people obsessed with sex thinking that sex will bring them true life. And money, we all want more and more thinking that this will give us true life. This is all nonsense, for it never really satisfies our hearts, and it feeds our fears that we will lose what little we have experienced.

Ask what David asked. Ask to see the beauty of the Lord in the temple of your personal worship. Go to Him in prayer and surrender and become someone who is fighting His battles. Your fear will disappear in your love and devotion for Him. Your winnings will not be for your sake but for His.

Francis of Assisi prayed: “O divine Master, grant that I might not so much seek to be consoled, as to console, to be understood as to understand, to be loved as to love.” The victory of our faith is not in winning all our battles and always getting our way, but in choosing to be on the right side and being a person of character in the right battle.

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