"I will bless the Lord who has given me counsel. My heart also instructs me in night seasons. I have set the Lord always before me. Because He is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. You will show me the path of life. In Your presence is fullness of joy. At your right hand are pleasures forevermore."
Psalm 16:7-8, 11
"For David says concerning Him, 'I foresaw the Lord always before my face.'"
David is saying, "I set the Lord before me." How did David do this? He set the Lord before him by recognizing His presence. We can do the same as we learn to adjust our hearts until we realize, "He's here." The ongoing realization of the presence of the Lord—the awareness of God being in us, upon us, and with us—is one of the most vital elements to the Christian life.
David became the great leader over Israel by leading them into prosperity, blessing and their greatest military victories. They finally received all the land that was promised to them, all those years from Joshua onward. David came and brought them into their inheritance. David was a great leader because he was the greatest of worshippers and the greatest of warriors. David wasn't even a Levite, but he was the ultimate priest. I believe he was so effective because of this principle. I have sought to pursue this principle every day in my own life. I set God before me by becoming aware of the presence of the Lord who is with me.
Our confidence levels skyrocket when the presence of the Lord becomes manifested to us. The clearer the manifestation of His presence, the greater the dimension of faith. To live by the theory of His presence is wrong. To say, "Well, I know He's always with me" is not good enough. That truth must launch us into an experience, or we're violating the truth. Truth is given as an invitation for divine encounter so that we would know by experience that God is upon us and God is with us.
David's entire life as a warrior and a priest was focused on this one thing: to daily take time before Him until we can see Him. Since we can't imagine a place where He isn't, we might as well imagine Him with us. The imagination is a tool that God uses to express Himself in and through us. The imagination is to be harnessed and yielded to the Lord so that in the process of yielding it becomes sanctified, and the sanctified imagination is positioned to perceive Him. The Bible goes so far as to say, "Having our senses trained to discern good and evil." Through this process of training our senses, we become able to recognize the presence of the Lord. David gives us this key, the absolute heartbeat of his life, as if he is telling us, "This is how I made it. Every day I beheld Him with me."
I feel that David's experience is a summons to the same privilege and responsibility to turn our awareness towards His presence, and in doing so, we invite the increase of that manifestation. As a result, when we behold the Lord, we have far greater success and far greater joy by ministering not out of principles but out of His presence.
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