November 7, 2016
Where to start...where to start? How are you doing? This week are moving into Week 3 of Session 5, David, Seeking A Heart Like His. (=> Study Information). Here we go...
1. Come Holy Spirit...Your Presence is a Present
This weekend I had the opportunity to attend Living Proof Live in Youngstown, Ohio. It was a last minute decision, but I volunteered to assist with the hospitality crew and took a step out of my comfort zone to just go. Yep, just go...no planning, just following God's lead. For those of you that know me, well, I'm a planner! When I say out of the comfort zone, I really do mean way out there! I would normally have had this trip planned a few weeks ago, hotel, registration, you name it. Nope, this time I just went with it! Well, there's something to be said when you just let go and let God!
Little did I know that God had a present. You see, the lesson from this weekend would so perfectly align with our current study. My act of obedience would bless me and equip me with some additional core strength for my "belt of truth" (Ephesians 6:14) so that I could in turn share with all of you so that you can build up your core as well. YAY!~ God is amazing and His timing is always perfect. The question is, are we willing to let Him take the lead? Are we willing to open up our hands and yield to His presence? Are we willing to trust and follow? Are we willing to accept the present?
Let me explain further...
In our study of David so far, we are discussing David's character. Based on what we may have either previously studied, read or watched and what we are learning about David, we know that he was a man after God's own heart. David was a soldier whose heart was fully committed to His leader, His Lord. What we are learning further in our Session 5 is that God's Spirit was with David from the time he was anointed.
Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the midst of his brothers. And the Spirit of the Lord rushed upon David from that day forward. 1 Samuel 16:13 (ESV)
All perfect timing. David was present (noun) for God's presence to be present with him "from that day forward".
So the question is are you present for God's present?
Let's start with the definition of "present". Quick side note, the word "present" is a homograph (two or more words spelled the same, but not necessarily pronounced the same and have different meanings). For example- bow (tie a bow) or bow (bow and arrow).
- a gift (noun 1) -the now (noun 2)
-to give formally or officially (verb) - here (adjective)
As David encounters the madness of Saul and is on the run for his life, God was present. In fact, God reminded David of his presence while he was on the run and sought safety and nourishment in Nob (a village between Jerusalum and Gibeah where the tabernacle was relocated) when he went to the priest, Ahimelech. I'll recap the the passage, but take a look when you get a chance. (1 Samuel 21:1-9)
David arrived in Nob on the run from Saul and needed nourishment. He asked Ahimelech, the priest at Nob, for five loaves of bread or whatever could be found. Since there was no ordinary bread available, David received the consecrated bread, the Bread of the Presence. Bible commentary tells us that the Bread of the Presence was only for the priests and those ceremonially clean.(Leviticus 15:18 and 25:4-9)
So, why did God permit the Bread of the Presence to be given to David?
Beth suggests the following:
1. The Bread of the Presence might have symbolized (served as a reminder of) God's everlasting covenant (presence)with David.
2. The Bread of the Presence might have symbolized the provision of God's presence in David's life.
I believe both considerations are on point. Why?
We know that upon David's anointing, the Holy Spirit was with David "from that day forward". (1 Samuel 16:13)We know that David was from the line of Judah (foretold in Genesis 49:10).We know that God had selected one of Jesse's (of Bethlehem) sons- HE provided the King. (1 Samuel 16:1)We know that God's covenant extended back to Abram and the offspring of Abram. David was one of the offspring. (Genesis 15:5)
With these truths, the Bread of the Presence was not entirely about food, it served symbolically as perfect timing and a reminder for David of God's continuous and sustaining presence and provision.
2. The Present is in His Presence
So dear princesses, think about the following statement:
David didn't just coincidentally land in Nob, he was in crisis. He was drawing close to those who were closest to God. God's presence and David's willingness to be present to receive the present from God (reminder of his everlasting covenant and God's presence in David's life) was the perfect gift he needed during this time of his life. It was because of God's presence in Nob that fed David spiritually. God reaffirmed his sustaining presence and provision in David's life.
God sends us reminders too. Sometimes we clearly see them and take hold of them with dear life. Other times, we miss them completely or see them briefly and shortly forget because we begin to rely on our own strength and not God's. However, take time to that the Lord for His grace, mercy and love. Ask God to make the reminders of His promises and His presence as bold as the sun in the day and as brilliant as the the stars in the night. You see, no matter the circumstances, God has a present (gift) in our present (the now), in this season and every season. In fact, in times of trouble, He is not just present (here), but VERY PRESENT.
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Psalm 46:1
God's presence is essential in our daily life, through His gift of the Holy Spirit, God reaffirms daily his sustaining presence and provision in our life. Know that this is no ordinary gift, it's an entrusted gift that gives us freedom and the ability to fulfull our ministry. The beauty of the gift is that Jesus is our present! As believers, Christians - God is with us. There is power in the Holy Spirit. (YAY again!)
13 If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” (Luke 1:13)
3. The Present of Eternity
Finally, when it's all said and done. When we are standing at the throne before God, Jesus is the only one that can present us to our heavenly Father. Because God presented Jesus to the world, Jesus can present us pure, holy, spectacularly lovely and blamess to the Father. Double YAY! See Jude 1:24-25
24 Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, 25 to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.
Gracious Father, thank you for your present of the Holy Spirit. Holy Spirit move on me. Help me to fulfill my ministry so that I can be a gift to someone else in your name. Fill me so that I live a life that demonstrates your Spirit by living life boldly, loving outrageously and experiencing your presence in the here and now.
Know that through the Holy Spirit you can:
do things you couldn't;feel things you didn't; andknow things you wouldn't.
For your praise and worship:
Great Are You Lord- All Sons and Daughters
Bread of Life- F. Hammond
Our Next Study?- It's not to late to join us for Session 5, David- Seeking a Heart Like His. Please forward to a friend. See the link for registration details => David- Seeking a Heart Like His
Remember, each day is an opportunity for us to...
Lead, Serve and GO!
Each day we have an opportunity to be the light and salt God has called us to be to others. Matthew 5:13-16 (NIV)