Our Response to His Presence, Part 1: Our Change of Posture in His Presence

“When Abram was ninety-nine years old the LORD appeared to Abram and said to him, “I am God Almighty; walk before me, and be blameless, that I may make my covenant between me and you, and may multiply you greatly.” Then Abram fell on his face…”
– [Genesis 17:1-3a ESV]

In this passage we read where God appeared to Abraham and gave him one of the most significant prophetic words of his life. This word that God gave Abraham changed every aspect of his life but two things specifically: 1. his posture in God’s presence and 2. his character in God’s presence. In verse 3 we read that when God appeared to Abraham and started speaking to him, it’s instant response was falling on his face. There were a couple of reasons Abraham responded the way did:
1. The Profoundness of the Presence of God
2. The Weight of the Word of God

1. The Profoundness of the Presence of God
I’ve been listening a lot to ‘O Holy Night’. It’s one the few songs, I believe, that capture the proper response to the holiness, as well as the presence of God. “Fall on your knees, O hear the angel voices.” What a beautiful line. What a profound reaction to the birth of our Lord.
There have been times where the presence of God has been so thick on me that I’ve laid on the floor in the middle of a worship service and done nothing short of weep and when it was possible for me to speak, the only thing that came out was my prayer language. In the words of Jason Upton, in his song ‘In the Silence’, “Sometimes there is no language, no language but a groan, sometimes there is no language, no language but a cry.” I have encountered the presence of God at times when I have been broken to a place where I can no longer do anything but worship. There was absolutely no choice anymore. I have learned that when God shows up He leaves you no options. There’s no other choice sometimes but to worship Him. That’s why God’s grace is irresistible.

2. The Weight of the Word of God
I think it’s interesting that God only shares with Abraham the introduction to full prophetic promise and the effect of that part of the promise alone made Abraham want to fall on his face. The weight of what that promise carried, I believe, humbled Abraham and left probably thinking thoughts like, “Who am I that my seed should multiply as the stars of the heavens?” The thought of that truly humbled him. After he had fallen on his face God continued speaking to him (v. 3b-14) because he responded correctly to the weight of the word. There are times in our lives where God speaks us and promises us something and the weight of the word leaves us with no choice but to be humbled by it.

I hope this has blessed you and encouraged you in some, way, shape, or form.

“The LORD bless thee, and keep thee: The LORD make his face to shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: The LORD lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace.”
– [Numbers 6:24-26 RV]

Of Pudding and Things Similar in Value

Whenever you say ‘Be thankful for the Little Things’ do we really know what we’re talking about or are we just spewing practical crap off the top of our heads to make ourselves seem morally superior? My fear is the latter. But I come to you tonight to tell you that I know what it’s like to be thankful for the little things. Oddly enough, I discovered this while eating pudding. Tonight, I had the choice to either partake of chocolate or vanilla pudding. Normally, I would’ve chosen chocolate but tonight I decided I would take vanilla. As I was eating it I thought to myself, “There’s something about this that’s familiar, almost nostalgic.” I thought about my grandmother, how she used to buy me pudding all the time at the local supermarket. Vanilla pudding is so simple. Just like the pudding, my childhood was also simple. My parents were divorced but it didn’t seem to bother me much. All I was worried about was whether or not I could get to spend the proper amount of time to spend with my grandmother or not. She was my best friend and she is my best friend. As I was pondering on the simplicity of the pudding and the simplicity of my childhood I became thankful for everything God has given me including her. There are so many times that I take everything for granted and I don’t say Thank you. Tonight, I will not forget to say Thank you. I will be grateful for everything I have and I will give God my praise for the little things.

“You say grace before meals. All right. But I say grace before the concert and the opera, and grace before the play and pantomime, and grace before I open a book, and grace before sketching, painting, swimming, fencing, boxing, walking, playing, dancing and grace before I dip the pen in the ink.”

~G.K. Chesterton