Wednesday, July 20, 2016

In God’s Presence - Martin Wiles

She had a sister named Mary. Mary sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. Luke 10:39 NLT

We vowed we’d remain the best of friends, but distance was fighting against us. We attended church together, worked with the youth together, and ate at each other’s house almost every Saturday night. David and Lisa were our best friends. 

Then one day, we received shocking news. They were moving. Lisa was from Denver, Colorado—almost clear across the United States. She and David had met when he settled there after helping a friend move. They had moved back to South Carolina for him, his brother, and a cousin to begin a construction business. Now the Denver National Airport—where he once worked, was offering him a job. We promised each other distance wouldn’t separate us. 

Initially, the calls were frequent. They even flew us out two times for a week of visiting. Then the calls became more infrequent. We each got busy with our lives, and voicemail messages became more common than actual conversations. Once a month conversations are now the norm. Even then, it’s not the same. Presence is missing. Tech conversations can’t replace an actual body and time spent together. 

Martha and Lazarus had a sister named Mary who had her priorities in order. She could hear stories about Jesus, she could even busy herself serving Him as her sister was doing, or she could simply revel in His presence. She chose the latter. This would nurture her relationship with Him more than anything else. 

What Mary knew, I’ve had to learn as well. I can busy myself serving God in any number of capacities. Opportunities to do good abound. But the doing can’t replace what happens when I simply choose to sit in His presence. As I sit, I may pray, read His Word, meditate, or simply listen for Him to speak to my Spirit, but the key is just reveling in His presence. 

Getting alone with God is essential for spiritual health just as experiencing presence is necessary for friendships to develop and grow. 

Having a plan, a time, and a place ensures we’ll not neglect the power found from remaining in His Presence. 

Prayer: Father, May staying in Your presence where we can be taught, loved, and nurtured be our goal. 

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