‘For the LORD God is a sun and shield;
the LORD bestows favour and honour.
No good thing does he withhold
from those who walk uprightly.’
“How lovely is Your dwelling place”, this Psalm begins - a line we maybe sung numerous times in the early 2000s, before the chorus declares: “Better is one day in your courts, better is one day in your house…than thousands elsewhere.”
Reading this passage, we cannot fail to notice the psalmist’s longing to be in the presence of God. Their words tell of God’s goodness. Note how even the birds find comfort and safety in God.
The entire Psalm builds in momentum until we reach this very verse, when joy can no longer be contained and the psalmist declares why it is they long to be nearer to the Lord: He is all things bright and good and generous.
How often do you take time to dwell in God’s goodness?
Consider the following as we look at this verse:
1. Ask God for glimpses of Him.
The psalmist writes that they would rather be a doorkeeper in God’s house than dwell “in the tents of wickedness.” They are so eager to glimpse God’s goodness that they are willing to spend their days standing at His door, catching little peaks every so often.
I am a huge fan of general revelation - the term theologians use for those times when we see the glory of God revealed through nature. For example, when you stand by the ocean or on a mountain peak or sit under a sea of trees and are overwhelmed by God’s creation.
Start today by asking God to catch your eye with glimpses of Him on your way to work or university, or when looking out of your bedroom window.
2. Boldly ask God for good things.
It might be easy to praise God for creation when we are having a good day or are skipping home from work on a Friday afternoon. But life is a little less straightforward than that; there are days when it is not so easy to shake off our tiredness or heavy hearts.
The psalmist tells us that God does not keep good things from those who trust and walk in Him - because He utterly loves you. If you are feeling drained or disheartened, pray loudly and boldly for God to fulfill His promise of good things to you. I pray He gives you joy and lifts your head and heart today.
3. Take note of the joy you receive.
Nowadays we all like taking pictures and sharing them as evidence of the good things we experience. Have you ever tried to photograph a rainbow, though? It usually resembles a pixelated murky streak on your screen, far from the magnificent vision your eyes see. Sometimes God brings us joy we can not photograph.
Today, take time to reflect on those times when you have glimpsed God’s glory. Make a big effort to start recording the good things God gives generously to you.
Blessed are those who trust in Him!