In the Atmosphere of Heaven

Psalm 16:11
“You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.”

This Psalm begins with a prayer for safety, in the light of what was happening around him, stopping to regain his bearings,  David takes refuge in the Presence of God.  Once safely in the manifest Presence of His God, David pours out his heart, expressing his deepest conviction in verse two saying; “You are my Lord; apart from you I have no good thing.”  

David is saying anything of eternal value in this life will be found in God!  Asaph understood this fact so well he was moved to write; Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you” (Psalm 73:25).  All this present world has to offer loses it’s charm while in the atmosphere of heaven.

Forever Ruined For What Is Ordinary 

Once exposed to the atmosphere of heaven, men and women throughout history have gladly abandoned everything earthly to be in the Presence of God.  In our passage under consideration, David too desired the dwelling place of God.  He was always placing God before him because it’s where he finds a fullness of joy.  

He’s shown the path of life by God Himself, thus regaining his bearings in a wayward world. David loves dwelling in the place where God is at his right hand providing all he’ll ever need in this life. Being with God having eternal pleasures at his right hand, why would he want to live anywhere else?

 The Atmosphere of Heaven

Abraham was touched by the atmosphere of heaven in his many encounters with God. He so desired the place where God dwells that it’s written; “he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God” (Hebrews 11:1).  It is the atmosphere of heaven, the place where the temporal and the eternal meet, the place where love and beauty dwell, where perfect wisdom and knowledge flow, it is the place of the very Presence of the Living God.

In His presence is life, and all that is, is the way it’s meant to be.  He is Life itself, He is love, He is light, and just being with Him fills us with peace and joy unspeakable.  He is all-knowing, all-powerful, and He is everywhere.  Is it any wonder that the Psalmist would say; “How lovely is your dwelling place, LORD Almighty!  My soul yearns, even faints, for the courts of the LORD; my heart and my flesh cry out for the living God” (Psalm 84:1-2)? – Of course not.


When we are in God’s manifest Presence we are in perfect reality, the place where the air of heaven meets earth.  I’ve always wondered how it is that so many who call themselves Christians could be bored with life, and have no desire to spend regular time alone with God.  My first encounter with God’s Presence invading my space filled me with such awe that I could hardly wait to be alone with Him again.

The first time I encountered His voice speaking to my heart, I was “forever ruined for what is ordinary.”  I read that once and wondered what the author meant…until I experienced the same thing myself.

Make time alone with God your highest priority and dwelling alone in His Presence, listening for His voice your aim in life.  Living close to Him will change you, until you too will say with King David “You will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.” 

Be much alone with God, Be filled with joy in His presence, and Be Encouraged! -JSP

* Image from http://one-elevenbooks.com/the-tailor-in-heaven/ 

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