Psalm 105:1-4 “O give thanks unto the LORD; call upon his name: make known his deeds among the people. Sing unto him, sing psalms unto him: talk ye of all his wondrous works. Glory ye in his holy name: let the heart of them rejoice that seek the LORD. Seek the LORD, and his strength: seek his face evermore.”
Hide and seek.
A kid’s game comes to mind when you hear it. But for many of us, it is the reality of our prayer life and our walk with God. We feel as if God has hidden Himself from us, and it is our job to seek Him out and find Him.
God smacks us with a truth that pulls open the curtain on our sincerity.
Deuteronomy 4:29 “But if from thence thou shalt seek the LORD thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul.”
Matthew 7:7-8 “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.”
There is no reason for us to think that God cannot be found, if we seek Him with all our heart and soul. It begs the question, “How badly do I want to be in the presence of God?”
Those of us who have expressed futility in our prayers soon realize that the problem is not God; it is us.
It may be that for which we are asking.
James 4:2-3 “Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not. Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.”
With the promises God has given us, there is only one answer to unanswered prayer – “I” am the problem. It may be that for which I am asking is not in His will. It may be that I am asking selfishly. It may even come to a good thing – healing for someone other than ourselves. Unless I come to God and get my answer, I cannot know the reason for unanswered prayer.
Then, there are the times when it is not for us to know what the outcome will be for that which we pray. The salvation of a wayward child. The return of the prodigal. The healing of a diseased little one who still has their whole life ahead of them. A catastrophe that seemingly took innocent lives.
We feel like we should be whole, perfect, entire; wanting nothing to perform the will of God. We’re not alone.
2 Corinthians 12:7-8 “And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.”
Many think it was Paul’s eyes. Others, his disfigured body from the stoning he received. Whatever the infirmity, he felt it was a hindrance to the work of God and asked that it be removed so he could work more fruitfully. Then, God revealed His will to Paul:
2 Corinthians 12:9-10 “And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.”
Our need to know everything before we do a thing wants for control. We want to see the outcome. We want to govern the results. We hide our request under the guise of wanting peace of mind. We want assurance that it isn’t going to cost us much or hurt in the process.
God returns with a simple request – trust me. Our faith must be exercised to ever be in the place to please our Heavenly Father.
Hebrews 11:6 “But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.”
There it is again – “…diligently seek Him.”
Our text this morning says:
“Seek the LORD, and his strength: seek his face evermore.”
Can we commit to such a thing? Can we make such a change in our life to add seeking God to the top of our priority list? Job knew.
Job 23:11-12 “My foot hath held his steps, his way have I kept, and not declined. Neither have I gone back from the commandment of his lips; I have esteemed the words of his mouth more than my necessary food.”
It centers on our love for the Word of God.
It is there I will find His presence. It is there that I will see His face. It is there that I will indeed find all that I am seeking because God will direct me to seek only that which He ordained for me to have, and given me to do.
We seek counsel for answers. But honestly, have we heard from God first?
Psalm 95:6-8 “O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the LORD our maker. For he is our God; and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand. To day if ye will hear his voice, Harden not your heart, as in the provocation, and as in the day of temptation in the wilderness:”
Seek Him today. Pray He soften the hard parts of our heart. Ask for wisdom. Ask for understanding. Pray for discernment and the ability to see things as God would desire for us to see.
I genuinely believe that if God’s people sought Him with their whole heart, we would have a very different outlook and attitude.
2 Chronicles 7:14 “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”