“Lord, you have been our dwelling place in all generations.” Psalm 90:1
Moses wrote this psalm, we believe, soon after the Israelites had been delivered from slavery in Egypt but near the time they began to grumble about being led into a barren and bleak desert. “What are we going to eat or drink?” “Where are we going?” “How long until we get there?” “What will happen along the way?” “What will happen when we get there?” “By the way, where is ‘there?'” Even though they were now free, they were alone and completely dependent on God for daily living.
Where were they? Right where God wanted them: in a dependent relationship with Him. They didn’t know then, but they were “home.”
How do we know when we are, “home?”
For me, it started out being about a certain address on the planet: that address has changed over the years, but in each case, a few things remained constant: My family was there. My friends were close by. My clothes were there. My bike was there. The sunlight was there. I ate there. Peace was there.
Home is where I am most like myself….my true self. It is where I rest the best.
From time to time, I invite others in to share this place and to know the same peace I do when I am there. I choose to be there more than any other place.
As wonderful as my home is, I am learning there is a better place to “live.” It is “in God.”
For years this idea has boggled me: what does it mean to live, “in God?”
In recent days, God is teaching me that to live in Him really means to live “from from Him,” to receive from Him all that I need and want, in this life and, one day, extending into the next. My direction comes from Him. My hope comes from Him. My correction, redemption, identity, comfort, purpose, reason to be and very meaning all come from Him. If I will let it, these flow from Him to me like an endless, purposeful, personal and reliable river of clean and clear water, every day.
This is what I believe it means to know God as our dwelling place. Just as He was beginning to demonstrate to the Israelites how to live in the desert, taking from Him their daily needs, He is teaching me that I dwell at home in Him when I receive life from Him, in dependence on Him.
Apart from a particular address, we can be “at home” in God wherever we are. We live together: He is in me, and I dwell in Him.
He is proving Himself entirely reliable in sustaining me: I am learning to trust Him more in daily living. He is becoming that familiar Person who is always Present, His face toward mine, His Heart toward mine. He is turning my inward gaze outward, leading me out of bondage and into a journey with Him.
Where are we going?
We’re going home.
“Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.” John 15:4-5