The songwriter, apparently, was a “one thing” person. Laser focused. Knew what he wanted above everything else. And this morning, as I hover this one thing, I think I’m seeing two things which are vital towards achieving the goal. Ask and seek.
One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in His temple.
(Psalm 27:4 ESV)
To be where the glory dwelt. That was David’s over-arching one thing. To be as close to the majesty as the majesty would allow. That’s where David wanted to be. To dwell in the house, abiding in the place where the LORD said He would reside. To gaze upon His beauty, beholding all that God would be pleased to reveal of His soul-capturing character. To inquire in His temple, looking to pick up whatever the LORD might lay down of His will and His way. That was the psalmist’s one thing.
One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after.
I have asked for one thing. I will seek after one thing. I suppose you can read that not as doing two things, but as communicating a longing for the same thing in two different ways. A way of emphasizing the depth of desire for the one thing of knowing the near and abiding presence of God. Fair enough.
But this morning, it strikes me as two actions towards the same end. Asking and seeking. Petitioning and pursuing. Entreating God’s favor and exercising one’s own initiative. Believing that God would answer the songwriter’s lofty prayer, behaving in a manner consistent with his desired outcome.
Sure, God is powerful enough and sovereign enough that if we ask Him to settle us on the west coast, but determine to set our GPS toward the east coast, he can override our misdirection and land us where He wants. But what if that isn’t the normative way supernatural outcomes happen? What if, instead, God delights in us realizing our heart’s heavenly desire because it is also our heart’s earthly determination? The expression of our longing to abide with Him, coupled with the effort of drawing close to Him?
Ask and seek. Desire and determine. Pray and proceed. I’m thinking that’s what one thing people may be inclined to do.
Only by God’s grace. That they might know God’s glory.
A heavenly desire, holy determination a concept that I pray I never forget.