Series 41


by Francis Dixon
Key-verses: “David went in and sat before the Lord.” (1 Chronicles 17:16)
“Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet.” (Luke 10:39)

By bringing these two references together we are at once presented with our theme: the Worker’s posture, or attitude, in the Lord’s presence. What should it be? These verses suggest it should be the attitude, or posture, of sitting. There are two places where we sit before the Lord – privately, when we are alone; and publicly, when we meet with His people to worship Him and serve Him. It is possible for us just to sit, not really to sit before the Lord: Matthew 15:8 indicates this terrible possibility! The trouble with most of us is that we are constantly hurrying, rushing and working, and what we more often need to do is to sit quietly before the Lord. We need to do this deliberately, regularly and frequently. Look up Matthew 6:6, and compare Hebrews 10:25. Are you having those times of “sitting before the Lord”?


1. This attitude of sitting before the Lord suggests three things

  1. (1) Relaxation. When we sit we are in a relaxed position – and what need there is for every one of the Lord’s servants to know how to relax – physically, mentally and, above all, spiritually! It is well known that the secret of good health, peace and power in body, mind and soul is found in the art and practice of relaxation. This is true with regard to our bodies and our minds, and it is also true with regard to our souls. Do you have the right amount of rest and relaxation like this in relation to your spiritual life and needs?
  2. (2) Submission. In the case of the Psalmist David and of Mary, their attitude of sitting before the Lord indicated submission. They were ‘at his feet’. At whose feet? At the feet of the King, their Lord and Sovereign. How great He is, and how small they were! – look up Isaiah 57:15. Our great need is to get into this place of submission to Him, where we recognise His majesty and holiness and where we yield completely to His sovereignty and authority in our lives.
  3. (3) Expectation. When David and Mary sat before the Lord they were expecting something to happen; and of course it did! Sitting there in the presence of the King meant that they were never quite the same again. When Isaiah went into the Lord’s presence his life was completely changed and his ministry was revolutionised (Isaiah 6:1-8). Similarly, when we come to sit before the Lord we come in faith expecting something to happen:-


2. As we sit before the Lord three wonderful things happen

  1. (1) We see His face. Try to picture David as he sat before the Lord and spoke to Him, and Mary as she sat at Jesus’ feet and listened. When we sit before Him it is to worship Him, to recognise His greatness, His glory and His grace; and when we look at Him we are changed into His likeness. Compare Psalm 34:5 with 2 Corinthians 3:18.
  2. (2) We hear His word. Of course, as David and Mary sat at His feet they spoke to Him, but the most important fact is that He spoke to them. Our greatest need is to hear what He has to say to us (Psalm 85:8). Why?
    1. (1) We fail and grieve Him, and need to act on His word (1 John 1:9).
    2. (2) We think He has withdrawn His love because of our sin and failure, and need to rejoice in Jeremiah 31:3.
    3. (3) We think we have committed the unpardonable sin, and need to hear and rest on His word in John 10:28-29.
    4. (4) We think He has forsaken us, and need to hear and trust His word in Hebrews 13:5-6.
    5. (5) We worry about the provision for our needs in the future, and need to hear and believe Philippians 4:19.
    6. (6) We wonder why God does not use us more, and need to hear and rely on His word in Galatians 6:9.
    7. (7) We sometimes feel lonely and forsaken when trials overwhelm us, and we need to find comfort in His word in Isaiah 41:10.
  3. (3) We receive His grace. King David did (1 Chronicles 17 tells us!). And Mary did – read Luke 10:38-42! And Paul did – look up 2 Corinthians 12:7-9, and see what he says there! And you must receive His grace if you are to be the Christian God wants you to be. We need to sit at His feet in order to enter into the experience of 2 Corinthians 9:8.


This study really impresses upon us the importance of cultivating a holy walk with God. It emphasises the essential requirements in the life of a Christian worker, namely, communion with the Lord Himself. When General Gordon, the great Christian soldier, was in his tent praying, his men would know that he was alone with his God because of the white handkerchief attached to the entrance to his tent. This was a warning that no-one was to enter and interrupt the General’s interview with his Lord.

“And David the king came and sat before the Lord”…”Mary sat at Jesus’ feet.”