The Beauty of the Presence of the Lord


I’ve never seen the real Tabernacle, nor the Temple that Solomon had built, nor the Temple that stood when Jesus walked this earth. I’ve never had a earthly High Priest enter the Holy of Holies on my behalf, and enter into the presence of God for me.

Yet, through the grace of God, I have been in His presence and there is simply nothing that quiets the soul or gives us rest or calms our troubled hearts like being in His beautiful presence. King David in the Old Testament is among many who experienced this reality.

Psalm 27:4 NIV  “One thing I ask from the Lordthis only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.”

We know, of course, that the Tabernacle and the Temples were just material representations of heavenly realities, and that God is a spirit who is not confined within any material structure. But for a time, to show us of Himself, He did in fact, represent Himself within these material things, so that we might become aware of His Holiness and what separated us from Him and what would be needed to make that separation between us and God go away.

And now, because of what Jesus did for us, as believers, God’s Holy Spirit dwells within us and we can come into the presence of our God whenever we want. The curtain that separated the Holy Place from the Holy of Holies in the Temple, has been rent, from the top to the bottom, and we have access to God through Jesus, His Son, our High Priest. And our sins, which formally separated us from God have been eradicated because of the shed blood and laid down life of Jesus, for us. And because Jesus now lives, we live now and shall live with Him when we leave this earthly life behind.

Have you ever noticed that sometimes when we need God the most, when He sometimes feels distant or silent, or when we face a serious problem, our humanistic tendency is to NOT seek His presence? I’ve learned from experience that it takes time to come to the realization that the better solution, the prudent solution, the wise solution, is always to go to Him. And not as an afterthought but as the initial thought or action.

I may not always understand, I may not always comprehend, I may not always feel His presence, but He is there and He does understand. And He is in me and I am in Him and there is no greater peace than that. Knowing this and believing and trusting in this reality, is what faith in God is all about, whether the feelings are there or not.

Interestingly enough, many times, going to God when there are no feelings of closeness at all, brings into being, the awareness that He is there and that He knows our need. It’s like doing good for someone else that you know is right and after you have done it, that witness of righteousness is there that can’t be denied. The witness follows the action, not the action following the witness. There’s a pattern there if you look for it.

That part in David’s psalm where he mentions about the beauty of the Lord is something that only God can impart to us because it is a spiritual reality and it is only visible when He brings us into the awareness of His beauty. And I have tasted, and I have seen and there are no words which can adequately describe that reality. David knew that reality because you can’t write about it like that unless you have known it. Notice how David puts a very high priority on this reality. “One thing I ask from the Lordthis only do I seek:” And why is that? Because nothing, absolutely nothing surpasses the beauty and wonder of being in the presence of the Lord. 

Do you ever wonder why it is that God doesn’t allow us to experience the wonder and beauty of His presence more often? Or why He says in Psalm 34:8 NIVTaste and see that the Lord is goodblessed is the one who takes refuge in him.”?

I think it is because He wants us to realize the value and worth of Him and the spiritual reality and considering that we are continually surrounded with the material reality 24/7, He needs to shift our focus on the greater worth and the greater reality. That is where stretching our faith and trust in Him comes into play. The battle between the values of the material and spiritual is real and it is precisely because of the difference between the material and spiritual realities that Jesus said we must become “born again”.

John 3:7-8 NIV  “You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You must be born again.’ The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.”

So now we “taste“, but one day we shall feast because we shall see God face to face. 

1 Corinthians 13:12 NIV For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.”

Worthy is the Lamb! Blessings!







  1. “So now we “taste“, but one day we shall feast because we shall see God face to face.” Bruce, what is your favorite color? I absolutely LOVE this line. I am going to star it in my journal in your favorite color. (Weird I know, color helps me remember things!) I am so thankful that God allows us to be in His Presence. I am so thankful that God’s Presence is not contingent on how I feel or what I perceive. May God flood you and your family with the peace and beauty of His Presence today. Father God, thank You for Bruce. Lead him and guide him. Cause Bruce to know the beauty of Your Presence more and more. Lord God, continue to use Bruce to be a light wherever You have him. Lord, in all things may we be reminded that our lives are not about us but about You. Thank You Father for Bruce and his family, in Jesus’s Name I pray, Amen.


    • Oh Mandy, I’m just glad it resonated with you. I use colors too in my Bible! Highlighting and underlining DOES help us remember, just so you know. Let’s go with red and you have yourself a blessed Sunday. Much grace and blessings to you and yours!

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  2. I just read Ps 16 and v 11b really correlates to your post “you will fill me with joy in your presence” (NIV). Beauty and joy go together. At the end of the Age “we will see the King in His Beauty and we will be glad forever” (Thomas Schreiner). I don’t normally recommend books; however, The King in His Beauty: A Biblical Theology of the Old and New Testaments changed my life.


  3. Complete faith in God has been my reality long before I knew Jesus Christ. Who I considered to be God, The Creator of all, truly has been my best friend for as long as I can remember, literally.
    But a month ago, I came to the realization that my fondest memories of my earthly father, was when I saw him. Just the physical act of seeing him, wether close up or afar, brought a complete feeling, joy, peace, security and love. The very sight of my earthly father spoke to me that everything was going to be ok.
    My dad never lived with us so I didn’t see him every day. Sometimes I only saw once a year. But he never stopped being my dad who’m I loved and loved me.
    For the last month I’ve been applying this Truth to YHWH, my Holy Father and to Jesus Christ. The very fact that He orchestrated this event in my life that I may understand the reality of His Goodness and His love.
    God The Father is so much more than anything we could ever fathom.
    But I testify in Truth, that He is very personal and involved in peoples lives. To me, He’s more real than the keyboard I’m currently typing on or anything that I can physically see with my two eyes.
    Ears to hear and eyes to see aren’t so much for understanding, but to know The One who IS all.
    I haven’t seen God the Father, but I have seen my earthly father, and truth is, My Father in Heaven who’m I’ve not seen surpasses what I’ve received from my earthly father.
    Sorry if I’m ranting, I’ve been thinking about this for a month.
    Have a great day Bruce


  4. Thank you for your post, Bruce. There were times that the Lord withheld His presence ~ before I was ready. What good is it for Him to shine His glory in our direction when we are focused on something else without knowing. It is the power of the Holy Spirit that chooses when He is ready. Waiting is sometimes preparation for the reality.


  5. Very good post. This part is so true: “Interestingly enough, many times, going to God when there are no feelings of closeness at all, brings into being, the awareness that He is there and that He knows our need.”

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