“One Thing I Desire”
There are many things and voices that vie for our attention all through life. For some of us, we have spent much of our life looking for meaning, looking for happiness, looking for purpose. Some of us look for far too long before coming to a place of knowing the truth. Others spend all of their life pursuing “things” and never come to the knowledge of the truth at all; yet we live in a time where God has made all things plain. In Acts Chapter 17, the Bible says that God has pre-appointed both the time of our existence and where we will exist on planet Earth for a very specific purpose.
24God, who made the world and everything in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands. 25Nor is He worshiped with men's hands, as though He needed anything, since He gives to all life, breath, and all things. 26And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their pre-appointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings, 27so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us;
28 for in Him we live and move and have our being, as also some of your own poets have said, 'For we are also His offspring.' 29Therefore, since we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Divine Nature is like gold or silver or stone, something shaped by art and man's devising. 30Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent, 31because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained. He has given assurance of this to all by raising Him from the dead." NKJV
That specific purpose is that God has established our time and our boundaries so each of us might seek Him to know Him. In Psalm 139, the psalmist said, “You,” that is, God, “knitted me together in the secret place,” and then, “You numbered all of my days before any of them came to be.” God did that for each of us.
In Psalm 27 King David, perhaps the greatest King of Israel, and also a prophet and a psalmist, said this:
4One thing I have desired of the LORD,
That will I seek:
That I may dwell in the house of the LORD
All the days of my life,
To behold the beauty of the LORD,
And to inquire in His temple. NKJV
With all that King David had known and experienced throughout the course of his life, an exciting and adventurous life by any standards, there was one thing above all else to experience and to know. That was to dwell in the house of God and to inquire of His counsel. To dwell in the house of God, would be more than just going to church. It would include genuine service, fellowship and unity with God. Inquiring of His counsel would be to know God’s divine direction, not just for humanity but for David as an individual. It would also include knowing God’s ways, how He speaks to us to provide direction, and then acting on that direction once God provided it.
In the Book of Luke we find Jesus teaching in Martha’s house. It is her home and she is serving the people, as you might expect a host to do, but we see an interesting conversation between her and Jesus.
38Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. 39And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus' feet and heard His word. 40But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, "Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me." 41And Jesus answered and said to her, "Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. 42 But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her." NKJV
In Matthew 6:33 Jesus tells us to “…seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added to you.” What things? What we drink and eat’ what we wear, where we live. In other words, everything we have need of in life will be provided if we seek Him first. Seeking Him is the one thing that is needed. As we do that, everything else falls into place.
In John 17:3 in the midst of praying to the Father, Jesus said that eternal life is to know God the Father, the one true God, and to also know Jesus Christ, the Savior anointed and sent by the Father to redeem humanity. Everything else in life is a distraction that can lead us away from God unless we seek Him first. As we live out our days here on Earth, let’s do as Jesus said, let’s recognize what King David recognized: there is one thing to be desired. That is to dwell in the house of God and to inquire of Him, to know God. Amen.