Sunday, April 9, 2017

The Presence

UV 2249/10000 The Presence
Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore
Psalm 16 v 11

The joys of this world are transient, ephemeral, tantalising, half empty and pyrrhic or extracting a greater cost than they give. The true fullness of joy one can have only in the presence of the Lord. Once we are continually related to Jesus, He shows us the path we need to take. He will lead us to the fountains of life though He takes us through a narrow and often rocky path. He will feed us as a shepherd feeds his sheep. He will wipe our tears or remove the root cause of our sorrows and pain as a shepherd removes the thorn pierced in the limbs of the sheep.

Instead of the transient and undependable or deceitful joys of this world, the Lord will give us eternal pleasures of being in His presence. Buddha taught the eight fold path to salvation, Mahavira taught the three fold path but Jesus Himself became our path to salvation and eternal joy and pleasure. He declared Himself as the Way, the Truth and the Life. He is the Way to a personal relationship with the Lord God. Once we are in a personal relationship with God, we find eternal joy in the Truth of His word and we have the eternal and abundant life, lacking in no good thing. We enjoy in His presence, the pleasure of divine wisdom, the pleasure of His strength, the pleasure of knowledge that He is in control of our lives, the pleasure of overcoming obstacles and hindrances in our lives, the pleasure of knowing we have immortality, that we will not suffer eternal death though we die physically.

The prophet Isaiah speaks of two eternal joys we have in the presence of the Lord: the joy of the farmer- a rich harvest, our diligent and faithful efforts will eventually bear a result and a reward and the joy of the victorious warrior. We also have the joy of knowing that we are fulfilling the purpose of our existence. True success is fulfilling the purpose for which we are created in His image and redeemed by His Son. The material presents of God are immaterial. The presence of God with us will make the place we are in just now part of heaven. We will enjoy eternal peace, gladness of heart and celebrate the kingdom of God in us with hymns, psalms and spiritual songs. The presence of the Lord with us will hae a moderating influence on us such that we will not go into an emotional high followed by a low. Nearness to Him makes us able and stable. The presence of the Lord with us will distinguish us as it did the ancient Israelites under Moses. People will see that we are special and different. The Israelites had consistent victory against multiple and formidable foes and enemies. They experienced miraculous intervention of the Lord. In contrast to a pyrrhic victory, we enjoy massive victory against heavy odds without paying the cost. We live the full, true, abundant and eternal life at the expense of Jesus.

Prateep V Philip

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