February 3

Bible Reading: “He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” (Psalm 91:1)

To “abide” under someone’s “shadow” carries two possible meanings, both of which are applicable here. First, it could mean to be permanently preempted by another. The one in whose shadow you live always receives the glory, while you remain in obscurity. Is there any better depiction of the truly devoted Christian heart than this, a heart that is continuously seeking God’s glory rather than its own? Such a heart will always find itself at home “in the secret place of the most High.”

The other possible meaning is rather obvious. To “abide” under someone’s “shadow” is to be perpetually in their presence. The precious promises of this Psalm are not for those who occasionally seek entrance into the Heavenly Holy of Holies or who rush in before the Mercy Seat only when some problem imperils their well-being. Instead, the precious promises of this Psalm are for those who live in constant communion with “the Almighty.” They are only for the elect of the elect, the Simeons and Annas of our world who “depart not from the temple day nor night” (Luke 2:25-38).

It has been said, and rightfully so, that you are as close to God as you want to be. There is nothing keeping you from getting closer to God than yourself. You can get as close as you want to. The problem is, most people don’t want to get that close. The closer we get to the light, the easier it is to see our sins and imperfections. Thus, getting closer requires a greater repentance and a holier life. Most folks simply prefer staying further away and settling down where it’s a whole lot less spiritually demanding.

If you are not as close to God as you used to be, guess who moved?