Nothing changes until we enter the presence of the Lord

The familiar words of Psalm 73 washed over me anew. I had read these words before, but this time, for some reason unknown, they came alive. The preacher read Psalm 73, and the Spirit of the Lord opened the eyes of my heart.

The psalmist begins in the right place. He begins proclaiming the goodness of God to those pure of heart. But he quickly shifts his attention from the Lord to the people around him. He confesses he is envious of the wicked (v3a), envious of their prosperity (v3b), envious of their plenty (v4b, 7), and envious of their apparent ease of life (v5). The psalmist is envious even as the wicked mock the Lord (v11).

I see myself in these verses. I begin right. I believe God is good to me, but then I shift my eyes to those around me who appear to have it easier or appear to have so much more. I am tempted to respond like the psalmist, who questions the worthwhileness of following God (v13).

Until

What a transition word. The psalmist’s eyes are on himself and on his dissatisfaction UNTIL he enters the sanctuary of the Lord (v17). The antidote to my self-centeredness is not a change in circumstances or reward from heaven. The remedy to my self-centeredness is a focus on God, entering into His presence. Only then will I see that God is sovereignly working out His plan.

“Until” is an amazing transition word. The Psalmist’s eyes are on himself and his dissatisfaction UNTIL he enters the sanctuary of the Lord. Psalm 73 #biblestudy #bibleverse #bible

As I enter the Lord’s presence, I see that God will justly deal with evil (v18-20), but I also see that I am no better than the wicked (v21-22). I am senseless and ignorant. I am like a beast before the Lord. I deserve what the wicked receive, yet that is not what the Lord offers me.

The psalmist celebrates because he is continually with the Lord, and I, too, can celebrate because my faith in Christ for the forgiveness of my sins allows me to enter into the presence of the Lord Most High. God sees me through the filter of Christ, and He takes my hand and leads me with wise counsel. He welcomes me into His glory.

The wicked were still prosperous, had plenty, and lived a life of ease, but it no longer mattered because the Psalmist had God. When you have God, you have everything. #bible #biblestudy #bibleverse

All this happens when we lift our eyes to the Lord. Notice that the circumstances of the psalmist’s life did not change. The wicked were still prosperous, had plenty, and lived a life of ease, but it no longer mattered because the psalmist had God (v25). When you have God, you have everything. When your heart and flesh fail, God is your strength and your portion forever (v26). There is no need to envy the wicked, for they will perish apart from God. But you? You are near the Lord, and it is good. He is your refuge. Go and tell of His wondrous work. Chase holiness.

If you need help lifting your eyes to the Lord, or if you don’t know where to start, consider checking out Chasing Holiness. It will encourage you in your pursuit of holy living, and it releases MARCH 4th!

If you missed the first few segments of the FREE bible study on Jeremiah 17:5-10, you can catch up here. Once you are caught up, there is a sign-up link that will direct all future segments into your inbox.

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