His Precious Presence
The lame man had been coming to the temple for years, but he never entered - he couldn’t. Jewish tradition forbade anything or anyone that was flawed from entering into such a sacred, holy house of worship. He was a Jewish believer without access to the most treasured place in their culture. He was a man who could not provide for himself, let alone a family. He had spent his life as a lowly beggar outside of the temple gate. He had no use of his legs and was essentially an outcast. Day after day, he was breathing, yet barely living.
But something shifted the day that man encountered Peter, John, and the power of Jesus. He called out to the two men in search of some coins, and was met by a surprising response. Instead of giving alms, Peter said, “Silver and gold have I none, but such as I have give I thee: in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk!” Then Peter reached down, pulled the man to his feet, and the lame man was immediately healed - his life instantly changed!
When the man received his healing, he didn’t go out to celebrate. He didn’t gather a crowd to show off his new fully-functional legs. No. The Bible says that he jumped up and ran straight into the temple to praise the Lord.This man recognized how precious God’s presence was. He was more thankful for the opportunity to be close to God than he was about his personal gain.
Do we have that same love for God’s presence? Do we share that same excitement to be in our church? We are so blessed to be able to step into His presence and worship Him whenever we want. It’s so easy to take that for granted. But imagine if you were like the lame man - prohibited from getting close to the almighty Creator and Redeemer. How much more would you value your time with God?
It seems that sometimes we seem to be more excited about our blessings than we are to simply be able to have a close relationship with the Lord. But in reality - no blessing is greater than being able to stand in the dwelling place of the Most High, surrounded by His sweet Spirit. Nothing we could receive could match the privilege of touching Heaven. While miracles and blessings are wonderful, we should never allow ourselves to admire what He does more than we honor who He is. It shouldn’t take restricted access to His throne room for us to understand the how precious He truly is.
Pray: “God, Your Spirit in my life is the only thing I truly need - the only thing I truly want. I don’t ever want to reach a place in my life where I seek Your hand more than I seek Your face. If You never showed me another miracle or sent down another blessing, I would still count myself incredibly favored just to know You and be loved by You!”