God is Present - First15 - January 23
God is Present
This week we'll spend time stirring up our affections for God through the renewing of our minds. Your mind is the gateway to your affections. What you think is worthy of your affections is what will receive them. So, as we grow in our understanding of God’s overwhelming goodness we will naturally give him our hearts. May you be stirred by the unconditional love of your heavenly Father this week as his perfect nature is revealed to you in greater, more transformative ways.
Scripture: “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.”Zephaniah 3:17
Hardly a verse in all of Scripture sums up the heart of God for his people better than Zephaniah 3:17. As we walk through this passage today I pray your life would be transformed by the reality of God’s nearness and the depth of his love for you. Scripture says,
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.
“God is in our midst”—take a moment to consider that fact. God is not far off; in fact, he is with you right now. If you are a Christian, his Spirit dwells within you, fellowshipping with your spirit. Psalm 139:7 says, “Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence?” God’s presence is with you right now. He is in your midst.
He is “a mighty one who will save.” As a believer you have been saved not of your own accord, but by the humble, loving sacrifice of Jesus. If you have confessed your faith in Christ, you are his forever and nothing can take away your salvation. Rejoice in him today; the Almighty God has come for you, and you now have nothing to fear. Salvation is yours in him; you are a child of God.
“He will rejoice over you with gladness.”To rejoice over you means to rejoice in who you are. Do you believe that God rejoices in who you are? The world is in the business of convincing you that you’re nothing to rejoice about. Your enemy constantly points out things you do wrong, attempting to convince you that you aren't lovable—that you are worthless. But the Bible says that God will rejoice over you with gladness. God believes that you are worth the death of his Son, and there is nothing you can do to change his mind. He rejoices over you today.
“He will quiet you with his love.”How often do you allow God to do this? How often do you take time to let him quiet your life with his love? This is his promise, but like any other gift it has to be received. His desire is to bring a quiet peace to the stress and worry of your world. You have God’s peace available to you any time you are willing to surrender your heart and be filled with his presence.
“He will exult over you with loud singing.”To exult over you means to show or feel elation or jubilation, as the result of a success. Do you know that God sees you as a success? The story of Scripture is God creating mankind for the purpose of having communion and fellowship with us. He lost that perfect communion when mankind chose sin over him, and he has been working to restore it ever since. With the death of Jesus, the curse is broken, our sin is paid for, and we are now able to walk in restored relationship with God. God now has what he has longed for all this time—you. He exults over you because there is nothing between you and him. To God simply having relationship with you makes you a success already.
As a believer you can live out of the great victory God has achieved in you. You get to meet with God face to face. God is present with you today, desiring to do all that Zephaniah 3:17 promises. Allow God to come and fulfill his promises in your life as you enter into guided prayer.
1. Receive God's presence by meditating on this truth: God is in your midst.
“The Lord your God is in your midst.”Zephaniah 3:17
“My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.”Exodus 33:14
"Splendor and majesty are before him; strength and joy are in his place." 1 Chronicles 16:27
2. Receive the quiet heart that his love brings as you meditate on Scripture.
“He will quiet you by his love.” Zephaniah 3:17
“But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.” Psalm 86:15
“Give thanks to the God of heaven, for his steadfast love endures forever.” Psalm 136:26
3. Allow the truth of Scripture to go deeper into your heart. Your Father rejoices over you with gladness. He exults over you with loud singing. You are a success in his eyes.
“He will rejoice over you with gladness.” Zephaniah 3:17
“He will exult over you with loud singing.” Zephaniah 3:17
“Let me see your face, let me hear your voice, for your voice is sweet, and your face is lovely.” Song of Solomon 2:14
When the cares of the world come and crowd out the peace of God’s presence, turn your attention toward him and receive what he has already promised to give you. Memorizing a verse like Zephaniah 3:17 will help you consistently experience the promises of God. Meditating on it throughout your day is the best gift you could give yourself today. Make some time to memorize Zephaniah 3:17 that it might become more than words on a page and produce transforming, transcendent peace and joy.
Extended Reading: Memorize Zephaniah 3:17
For more information on today's devotional click here!