‘Restore us, God Almighty; make your face shine on us, that we may be saved.’ Psalm 80.7
The request for the Lord to make his face shine upon us is fascinating. God is not being asked to suddenly appear or come to us since he is already here, but rather that our awareness of him might increase. It is OK to ask for more of an awareness of him than we currently have!
Actually the simple truth that God is with us is enough to change our perception of his presence; he is already here, regardless of whether or not we can sense him. It’s knowing this that can make all the difference. We don’t have to struggle with our uncertain feelings but can ask God to shine his face upon us. This isn’t just about us experiencing him, but is also about the effect of his presence upon us. It is his face and his presence, shining on our lives and our circumstances, that bring change.
“Lord God Almighty, make your face shine upon me,” is a beautiful prayer that you can use at any time. You can even pray it over particular situations: “Make your face shine upon this situation.” Alternatively it can be a prayer to gently lead you into a deeper sense of God’s presence; as you breathe in use the words, “Lord God Almighty”, and as you breathe out, “make your face shine upon me”. What are you going to ask him right now?
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The Revd John Ryeland, Director of The Christian Healing Mission
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