Seeking and Finding, the Great Adventure
Seeking and Finding, the Great Adventure
A few weeks ago I was having my morning “walk with God.” Normally I begin by confessing sins while remembering God’s promise of forgiveness, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9)
Then I usually recite a scripture about God’s nearness, “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” (James 4:8)
I especially like the passage that encompasses both of these thoughts. God cleanses from sin and makes me near through the blood of Jesus, “In Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.” (Ephesians 2:13)
I often go through this sequence as I walk up our street heading north. The first five or ten minutes of my walk I invest in preparing my heart and mind to meet God by His Spirit.
Enter into His Gates with Thanksgiving
But in October the Spirit of God led me in a new way to approach God through several phrases which He brought to my mind from Psalm 100. The first was, “Come into His presence with singing!” So I began to sing (silently) as I walked on the sidewalk. I think I sang “Rejoice the Lord is King” because I know most of the words.
The next phrase which was quickened to me was “Enter His gates with thanksgiving”. So I began to give thanks. I had to work at this a little, for this was a departure from my normal routine of confession, cleansing, seeking, etc. But once I got with the new program it was a wonderful time. I spent several minutes giving thanks, and the more I exercised my thank muscles, the more things I thought of for which to be thankful.
The third portion of the Psalm that was illuminated that morning was “and His courts with praise!” I took this to mean to praise God for who He is. I had begun my approach to God by singing, then by giving thanks, now I had the opportunity and privilege to give Him honor and praise for who He IS. His character and nature.
My experience was similar to what happened when I gave thanks. As I pondered and thought about the nature of God, my heart and mind reveled in what I knew about Him and the thoughts turned from a trickle into a stream.
God is Love.“We have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.” (1 John 4:16)
God is Light. “God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.” (1 John 1:5)
God is Good. “Taste and see that the LORD is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!” (Psalms 34:8)
God is Near. “He is actually not far from each one of us, for ‘In him we live and move and have our being.’” (Acts 17:27-28)
God is Kind. “ When the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, He saved us.” (Titus 3:4-5 NASB)
God is Eternal. The eternal God is your refuge, and his everlasting arms are under you.” (Deuteronomy 33:27 NLT)
God Never Changes. “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.” (James 1:17)
Ordering Your Way Rightly
After several mornings practicing this new discipline I sensed the Spirit saying “orders his way aright.” When I returned home I looked up this passage. “The one who offers thanksgiving as his sacrifice glorifies me; to one who orders his way rightly I will show the salvation of God!” (Psalms 50:23)
This was an affirming confirmation of this new way of seeking God which I have sought to make a daily part of my times of drawing near.
It has been several weeks since I have been practicing this new approach and I was wondering why this approach was so effective. As I prayed and sought God, the thought emerged because Jesus is King of King and Lord of Lords. Regardless of what I see with my eyes or hear with my ears or read in the news, God is sitting on His throne. Uncontested. Supreme. Eternal.
It is right that I sing since He is God. It is right that I give thanks, for every breath is a gift from God. It is right that I honor Him, for He alone is Honorable. He is worthy. He is the Altogether Lovely.
The Greatest Human Achievement
The more I know God, the more I love Him. The more I love Him, the greater my desire to know Him. St. Augustine expresses this so eloquently when he writes, “To fall in love with God is the greatest romance; to seek Him the greatest adventure; to find Him, the greatest human achievement.”
May your seeking be blessed with finding,
Make a joyful noise to the LORD, all the earth!
Serve the LORD with gladness! Come into His presence with singing!
Know that the LORD, He is God! It is He who made us, and we are His;
We are His people, and the sheep of His pasture.
Enter His gates with thanksgiving, and His courts with praise!
Give thanks to him; bless His name!
For the LORD is good; His steadfast love endures forever,
And His faithfulness to all generations.