Desiring God

How lovely is your dwelling place,
LORD Almighty!
My soul yearns, even faints,
for the courts of the LORD;
my heart and my flesh cry out
for the living God.
Psalm 84:1-2, NIV*

This psalm opens with a progression: it’s not just the Temple courts the writer craves, it’s the Presence in that sacred space.

A few of the late April readings in Oswald Chambers’ classic My Utmost for His Highest touch on the danger of desiring the experience of God or the blessings from God instead of desiring God Himself.

A holy hush in the sanctuary, a strong spiritual experience, God’s tangible touch on our lives—these are wonderful gifts we need to receive with praise. But they’re evidence of His glory, they’re not the ultimate desire of our spirits.

If you make a god out of your best moments, you will find that God will fade out of your life… until you have learned not to be obsessed with those exceptional moments He has given you. Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest, April 25 

Holy and loving God, because of Jesus Christ our Saviour we can come into Your presence, and Your Holy Spirit dwells in us and makes us His Temple. Give us a thirst for closer relationship with You, a hunger for more than Your blessings—a hunger for You alone.

Matt Redman’s song, “Better is One Day,” echoes this psalm. Not sure who’s singing here.

*New International Version (NIV) Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

6 thoughts on “Desiring God

  1. Stephanie

    I’ve experienced the wonder of being in His presence. (I didn’t want to move or say a word, something very unusual for me, as my friends know.) I feel it was merely the tiniest taste of what an eternity with Him will be like. Would that I would always yearn for His presence and not His presents.

    1. janetsketchley

      “Yearn for His presence and not His presents” — well said, Stephanie! I know what you mean about the speechlessness, and for me too it’s a most unusual state. It’s a rare and precious gift, but you’re so right, we don’t dare live for the gifts but for the Giver.

  2. Margaret


    What an important truth to keep in mind!…. Many want to hold onto feelings only — as if they are more important than God Himself.

    We need to realize that many of the cults that exist today started with people exalting their feelings instead of exalting God our Savior for who He is…. Thank you for sharing this.


    1. janetsketchley

      So true, Margaret. I think we’re often guilty of accepting feelings as “proof” or fact, when we’re to walk by faith and trust instead of by our senses.

  3. free2soar

    Margaret, how true! While the feelings can be wonderful–joy, awe and the like–they can’t be our goal. We need to believe in the God of the Bible, even when we don’t “feel” all warm and fuzzy. After all that is the essence of faith. Bless you!


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