Contributed by Nathan Hall on May 24, 2003 (message contributor)
Summary: David was conscious of God’s presence in every situation, both bad and good.
There is a story of an old man who was quite ill, and the family called for their minister. As he entered the sick room and sat down, he noticed another chair on the opposite side of the bed, a chair which had also been drawn close. The pastor said, "Well, Donald, I see I’m not your first visitor for the day."
The old man looked up, was puzzled for a moment, then recognized from the nod of the head that the pastor had noticed the empty chair. "Well, Pastor, I’ll tell you about that chair. Many years ago I found it quite difficult to pray, so one day I shared this problem with my pastor. He told me not to worry about kneeling or about placing myself in some pious posture. Instead, he said, ’Just sit down, put a chair opposite you, and imagine Jesus sitting in it, then talk with Him as you would a friend."’ The old man then added, "I’ve been doing that ever since."
A short time later the man’s daughter called the pastor. When he answered, she informed him that her father had died very suddenly and she was quite shaken for she had no idea death was so near. Then she continued, "I had just gone to lie down for an hour or two, for he seemed to be sleeping so comfortably. When I went back he was dead." Then she added thoughtfully, "Except now his hand was on the empty chair at the side of the bed. Isn’t that strange?" The minister said, "No, it’s not so strange. I understand." (From James S. Hewett, Illustrations Unlimited, p. 416).
That man knew that God was with him right then, right there. Even in the dying moments of his life, he was aware of God’s presence. The Psalmist, David, was also aware of that presence. Let’s take a look.
As we can see from our text, David was conscious of God’s presence in every situation, both bad and good. One thing to point out about God before we get into this sermon is that He is omnipresent. This word means having the ability to be everywhere at the same time. He truly is able to be present everywhere, all of the time. Because of this, we can never escape from His Spirit—no matter what we do or where we go. Romans 8:35-39 says, “35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? 36 As it is written: "For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered." 37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.).
This morning, first let’s look at
I. God’s Presence In Good Times (vv. 8a, 9a, 10-12 8 If I go up to the heavens, you are there; 9 If I rise on the wings of the dawn, 10 even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast. 11 If I say, "Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me," 12 even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.).
A. One time when Michigan State was playing UCLA in football, the score was tied at 14 with only seconds to play. Duffy Daugherty, Michigan State’s coach, sent in place kicker Dave Kaiser who booted a field goal that won the game. When the kicker returned to the bench, Daugherty said, "nice going, but you didn’t watch the ball after you kicked it." "That’s right, Coach," Kaiser replied. "I was watching the referee instead to see how he’d signal it. I forgot my contact lenses, and I couldn’t see the goal posts." (From Bits & Pieces, September 15, 1994, pp. 7-8.).
B. First let me say that I am not a person that believes in “luck.” Luck involves coincidence, chance, and fate. I, rather, believe that God is control of everything. When we experience good things in our lives, they are from God.
C. Why is it that for so many of us, when things are going wonderfully, when we are prospering and there are no major problems in our family and we are feeling great, why is it that it is then that we forget all about God’s presence. We almost become confident in our circumstances instead of the Master of our circumstances.