The words of a particular song often sung by the church go like this – “I just want to be where You are, in Your dwelling place forever. I don’t want to worship from afar, draw me near to where You are. I want to be where You are, dwelling in Your presence, feasting at Your table, surrounded by Your glory. In Your presence, that’s where I always want to be. I just want to be, I just want to be with You.”
The obvious message in this song is the desire we have to be in heaven with God forever. We don’t want to be separated from Him at any moment, and we recognize that to be present with God and absent from the world is glory (2 Cor. 5:8).
There is also a sense in which we realize God is always with us. Romans chapter 8 teaches that Christians are never separated from and cannot be separated from the love of God. This, of course, leaves us with one single alternative. If we choose to leave God of our own accord, then we can leave fellowship with God and be lost eternally.
So what is holding us back from being forever in the presence of God? S-I-N!
If not for sin there would never have been death (Rom. 6:23). There would never have been the expulsion of mankind from the Garden of Eden, from the tree of life and from the presence of Almighty God (Genesis 3:22-24). If not for sin, the Son of God would not have needed to leave heaven. Sin comes in many forms, but ultimately it is defined as the breaking of the law that God has set forth for His creation (1 John 3:4). If we are to come back to God, the provision for our sin is Jesus Christ (John 14:6; 1 John 2:1-2).
But, the words of the song beg this question – Do we really want to be in God’s presence at all times? Are there things we do and say that make us hope God is not around when we do and say them? Would we rather be at a secular gathering than at worship? Would we rather study for school than study the Bible? Would we rather be in the company of the people of the world than with fellow Christians? Would we rather talk to a human being than talk to God?
We seriously need to consider making some changes if we have said “Yes” to some of these questions. Heaven is God’s eternal home, meaning the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit will be there forever. The redeemed of all the ages and the innumerable angelic host will be there as well. If we want to be where He is then we better start living as if we were with God all of the time.
God has made the offer of eternal fellowship with the human race, and we are the ones who have been blessed with love beyond our imagination. With these things in mind, let us continually praise our God together, and let each heart make a sweet sacrifice to His name, saying, “I just want to be where You are…”
“Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fullness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore” ~ Psalm 16:11
AUTHOR: Jeremiah Tatum
Photo background credit: Matthew Wilkinson on Creative Commons