Lately, and really for the past few months, I have been feeling called by the Father to pull away from my environment of busyness, to-do lists, and from activities of creating more things to do. To step back from the frenzy of reengaging around me, and instead deliberately create a large space in my life for just the Father and me. As my world seems to want to dive into a fast-paced life of freedom out of (hopefully) post pandemic isolation, it seems counter cultural to step back, at a time when everyone is rushing forward!
To step back into Him and protect time for His presence to take centre stage in my life, my work, and my relationships. Rather than allot Him a slot in my days between the work, programs, and activities that my post pandemic freedom allows, I’m feeling called to refrain from engaging in the “more,” especially if it takes away from us, our time, from His place on the throne of my life and my heart.
The extrovert in me, who laughs loudly, weeps freely, and loves people dearly would normally dive into these new events with a passion. I have already done so many times before, only to end up losing myself and my Father in the buffet of events and projects my life presented me, becoming driven by the need to produce and provide instead of noticing my need to learn to follow.
So I am being called to step back now, into His presence, to protect the slowness, to protect our relationship, the Father’s and mine, to protect the throne of my life as being fiercely and functionally only for my Father and my Lord. To protect time for His presence to flow, for worship. To protect our intimacy cultivated through a long-enforced time of quiet.
Quiet because of global decisions that slowed my life down, and that the Father and I used to grow together.
And one way God is calling me to invest into our time together is through praise and worship. Not the event of worship but the act of praise and worship, and giving this the time and priority which is sorely needed. I enter His courts with praise (Psalm 100:4), and how better to enter His presence? The Lord inhabits the praises of His people (Psalm 22:3).
Do you know what means? The psalmist tells us that God inhabited the praises of Israel. He uses the word yâshab, which according to Strong’s means to abide, to sit, to tarry, to remain. This is what the Father does with us when we praise Him, and then we enter into worship and deeper relationship with HIm.
Because cultivating a close intimacy with my Father, to walk through each day with Him, both of us hand in hand, experiencing and living life together, is more vital, more life giving and freeing than any collection of new activities and events our newfound freedom can offer. Our continual act of worship and praise is our circulatory system for His presence.
I am continually learning that only by deliberately investing into my relationship with my Father over everything else, with my time and priorities, will I ever truly be able to contribute to, rather than consume, whatever I engage in. I am then able to bring the fruit of our relationship with me.
Be blessed, loved ones.