How We Need Him (Psalm 84:2)
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.
Even the sparrow has found a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may have her young— a place near your altar, Lord Almighty, my King and my God. Blessed are those who dwell in your house; they are ever praising you.
Sometimes we are so aware of how much needs to change in the world. We read the papers or watch the news, or even just have a spat within our family, and we long with a deep longing for everything to be perfect, as we know it should be and as one day it will be.
I can remember a time in my life when things got so hard around me that I felt completely at the end of my reserves. I was utterly exhausted. For months I had been battling on, lurching from one crisis to the next, and experiencing so much sadness all around me. It got to the point where I knew that I didn’t even want answers as to why things had happened as they had – there were no answers that would have helped.
All I wanted was to know, really know, that God was there. That’s what I prayed for – not answers or solutions, but a real conviction of God’s presence.
Only in heaven will we completely and fully know God’s undiluted presence. Meanwhile, we need to learn of our need for him. Sometimes we only cry out to God when we feel at the end of our own reserves, but the truth is that we all need to cry out for God’s sustaining presence all the time.
We need to come to the point where we yearn for him, not just because things are hard, but because we recognise that more than anything else over and above all we need God’s presence in our lives.
Why do we need Him? Because that’s what we were made for.
God has made us for Himself, and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in Him.
Lord, help me to understand my deep need for you. Thank you that in the hardest times we realise more fully our need of you, but help me to yearn for you at all times, and each day to draw closer to you. Amen.
Margaret is the mother of our regular contributor, Emma. She lives in Cambridge and is a member of Christ Church. She teaches English in one of the Cambridge schools.