God desires to communicate with you face-to-face. It's been His plan from the beginning. We invite you to learn to enter into God's Presence by following the guided readings below, including scripture, a thought, and daily prayer.

Psalm 16:11 (ESV)

You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

Thought

Remember today that God’s presence is designed to make your life complete by providing joy and direction. The writer of this Psalm, David, encourages us to remember that God doesn’t desire to hide anything from us. He desires that we live on purpose with joy and find pleasure in Him!

Personal Prayer

Dear God, I desire to live a life filled with joy and walk in the direction and purpose you have called me to live in. I ask today that you make known your plans to me and give me the courage and obedience to walk in those ways. Be glorified in my life and allow the joy that comes from You to be a witness of your goodness to others.

1 Chronicles 15:28 (NIV)

So all Israel brought up the ark of the covenant of the Lord with shouts, with the sounding of ram’s horns and trumpets, and of cymbals, and the playing of lyres and harps.

Thought

At this point in Israel’s history, the ark represents the presence of God. Unfortunately, during Saul’s reign as king, the ark was captured by the Philistines. When David becomes king he realizes he cannot lead effectively without the presence of God, so he leads the people to repossess the ark. As you read the story you can feel the excitement build as they get closer and closer. After securing the ark of the covenant, their passion is almost uncontainable. With exuberant shouts, wild dancing and loud music the people make their feelings about God known.

Personal Prayer

Loving father, I am excited about our growing relationship. Help me respond to your presence the way Israel did in this story. I pray that I will bring enthusiasm to every worship service, to every small group meeting, and to every opportunity I have to serve. I pray for a contagious zeal that will bring you glory and honor.

Exodus 33:14-16 (NIV)

The Lord replied, “My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.” Then Moses said to him, “If your Presence does not go with us, do not send us up from here. How will anyone know that you are pleased with me and with your people unless you go with us? What else will distinguish me and your people from all the other people on the face of the earth?”

Thought

Moses sought continued assurance and direction from God as he led the Israelites through the wilderness. He knew that God’s Presence would be the only thing that would set the Israelites apart from all other peoples. When we truly allow God to abide in us, to lead us, to speak through us, people around us recognize something different. Something uniquely distinctive. Something we can’t emanate on our own. God’s Presence.

Personal Prayer

God, I am humbled that you choose to go with me, to be with me, to dwell in me. May that be what sets me apart. I pray that the people I come in contact with today will undoubtedly sense your Presence.

Psalm 23:6 (NLT)

Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me all the days of my life, and I will live in the house of the Lord forever.

Thought

Psalm 23 is one of the most beautiful passages in all the Bible. In it, David sees God as a shepherd who is guiding his every step. When confronted by evil, God becomes the perfect host and prepares a delicious meal to comfort and encourage the psalmist. In the end, David realizes that God loves him so much that he is literally chasing after him with His goodness and faithfulness. Sometimes we feel like God is far away, but God wants you to know that he is in hot pursuit. God’s goal is not just to deliver you from problems, but to develop an intimate relationship that lasts forever.

Personal Prayer

Dear Jehovah Rohi (“the Lord is our Shepherd”), I praise your name. It is great to know that you are guiding my life. Help sensitize my spiritual ears to know what to do in every situation. Lead me through difficulties with wisdom and grace. Finally, reveal the truths of this verse to me in a way that will impact my relationship with you.

Genesis 1:1-2 (NIV)

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.

Thought

What an astounding idea that God’s Presence and Spirit is in you and with you today just like the day God created the universe. Be encouraged knowing that the creative force of God’s presence is ordering your steps in this very moment, just like the beginning of time. Recognize that; be grateful and find joy.

Personal Prayer

Dear God, I recognize and rejoice that Your Presence and Spirit is in me, guiding me, and available to me every step of my day today. Help me walk in thanksgiving and awareness that your Presence is with me today guiding my steps and ordering my day. Amen!

Isaiah 57:15 (ESV)

For thus says the One who is high and lifted up, who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy: “I dwell in the high and holy place, and also with him who is of a contrite and lowly spirit, to revive the spirit of the lowly, and to revive the heart of the contrite.”

Thought

God is transcendent—He is “high and lifted up,” holy, inhabiting eternity. Yet God is also immanent—He is close. He is with “him who is of a contrite and lowly spirit.” There are two descriptions of those with whom God dwells: contrite and lowly in spirit. The definition of contrite is “feeling or expressing sorrow or regret.” And to be lowly in spirit is defined as: “humble in manner or spirit; free from self-assertive pride.” When we humble ourselves and realize our need for forgiveness of our sins, when we realize our utter dependence on God, then God can dwell with us.

Personal Prayer

Lord, you are holy and set apart. You are unlike anything else in creation, for you are above it all, the creator. Yet You love me, Your creation. Forgive me for the ways in which I have sinned against You. Break my pride and give me a humble spirit that You may dwell with me. Open my eyes to my own need for Your divine presence in my daily life.

Zephaniah 3:17 (ESV)

The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.

Thought

Today’s scripture is power packed with dynamic promises from God. This Old Testament prophet was reminding God’s people that if they would repent (change their minds) and follow God’s ways that God’s very presence would be with them, save them, rejoice over them and give them peace. What a delightful image of God singing over us because He is pleased with us. This is also the promise of God for those who accept Jesus, His Son, as Savior! Smile today thinking about the fact that because of Jesus, our God is singing over us!

Personal Prayer

Dear God, I recognize that You are mighty to save and rejoice over us with gladness. I rest in Your love and smile at the idea of you singing over me. Help me walk in Your ways knowing that Your presence is with me and is inside of me every step of the way.

Genesis 28:16 (NIV)

When Jacob awoke from his sleep he thought, “Surely the Lord is in this place, and I was not aware of it.”

Thought

We live much of our lives like Jacob, running from our trials and challenges. Running wastes our energy and dishonors God. God invaded Jacob’s sleep and revealed to him that He is present and with Jacob in his most trying circumstances. We often go through life, like Jacob, unaware of God’s presence. God wants to invade our lives with his presence, passion, and power. Jesus says to the church of Sardis in the book of Revelation, “Wake up!” He goes on to say there is a lot of work yet to be done. Are you ready to wake up from your slumber with an awareness that God is near?

Personal Prayer

God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, help me to wake up. I pray that you will make me aware of your presence through your Word, in my dreams, during difficult circumstances, and while I pray.

Psalm 73:28 (ESV)

But for me it is good to be near God; I have made the Lord God my refuge, that I may tell of all your works.

Thought

Refuge: A condition of being safe or sheltered from pursuit, danger, or trouble. What a deeply assuring promise that God’s presence is a place of safety and comfort. I love that the writer begins by saying…”It is good to be near God!” This is so true for us as followers of Christ. Remember, it is “GOOD” for you to be in God’s Presence.

Personal Prayer

Dear God, in every situation and every moment I run to you. You are my first defense and the first place of safety I run to. I recognize that Your presence is the best place for me to live. Help me to step into Your presence and refuse to ever step out again. Amen!

Psalm 84:10 (NIV)

For a day in your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere. I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of wickedness.

Thought

Psalm 84 celebrates the temple of God in Jerusalem. It was the direct connection with God’s presence at that time—where heaven touched earth. Because God has now made himself known to us in Christ, and because the Spirit of God dwells in us, today we can be in God’s “courts” no matter where we are. Yet, Psalm 84 implies a shared experience of God in the context of corporate worship. So, for us, the church is a community in which we delight in the Lord with others. It encourages us to celebrate the presence of God as we gather with God’s people.

Personal Prayer

Lord, indeed, there is nothing better than being in Your presence. I long for times when I am alone with You, when my heart is aware of Your Spirit. Yet it is also wonderful to gather with Your people - to sing, to pray, and to be encouraged through human fellowship in which You are present. Thank you, Lord, for allowing me to dwell with You.