Have you ever been to a concert before and wished you could get back stage? What would it be like to have an all-access pass to a concert from your favorite band or musician? Imagine arriving early and getting to meet the band in the green room. Maybe your VIP pass allows you to share a meal with them before the show. You kick back with people you’ve only ever thought about meeting as you listened to their music over and over. And it turns out, they’re just normal people too. You can ask them about their lyrics and what inspired them. During the concert you are back stage, watching the whole show unfold from a perspective most people only dream about.

That’s just a snap shot of what it could be like to have full access to something that is exclusive. When it comes to our faith, we actually do have full access to the living God. You and I have permanent access to the one who created us! Many of the Psalms talk about spending time in God’s presence. The phrase “the presence of God” may be kind of foreign for some, or may be a catch-phrase for others. But what does it really mean? Take this verse from David in Psalm 41 as your all-access pass to God. David says, “You allow me permanent access to your presence.”

Before you get caught up and think, “That says only David had permanent access because of his integrity,” remember David notoriously had a fling with a married woman, got her pregnant, then had her husband killed so that he could have her all to himself. That isn’t exactly my definition of integrity. David’s integrity came from his willingness to admit his sin and desire to make it right again. So if David can still have permanent access to the Lord, so can you.

I remember reading a teaching early on in my walk about God’s presence. The teaching said not to expect to be able to feel God. It said that we gain access to God mainly through studying the Bible. That made sense to me at the time. But the longer I have been a Christian and the more I know God, I more I am convinced he wants us to feel him. Certainly there are seasons where we do not. And undoubtedly, our faith should be contingent on what we believe, not what we feel.

But David also said this in Psalm 27:4, “The one thing I ask of the Lord—the thing I seek most— is to live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, delighting in the Lord’s perfections, and meditating in his Temple.” We can be like David and seek and desire God’s presence. David is asking this for all the days of his life. That means not only when he is in heaven, but here on earth too. If this is still feeling intangible and abstract to you, join me in the following prayer.

by Lauren Bratten

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“As for me, you uphold me because of my integrity; you allow me permanent access to your presence.” (Psalm 41:12)

God, I want to feel you today. Thank you that despite my imperfections, you have granted me permanent access to your presence.


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9781470723095When the Crown Cracks: 28 Doable Devos for When Life’s Not a Fairy Tale

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