To seek God is a spiritual hunger and thirst for the whole of who and what God is. It’s an act of worship and part of our deepening intimacy with the I AM, the sovereign God who longs to reveal Himself to us and reveal who we are in Him.
Blessed are those who keep His testimonies, Who seek Him with the whole heart! (Psalm 119:2)
I love to pause, especially in the early morning or late at night before I go to bed, and consider the limitlessness of God. It’s always a time of wonderful affirmation and a reminder that He is the I AM. But it’s more than simply knowing that He is able to accomplish anything and provide everything out of His immeasurable grace. These moments constantly remind me that there is so much of Him. So much that we will spend our entire lives and never learn all there is. As I drank in the peace of this morning, the stars still twinkling overhead, I realised something. So seek God is so much more than obedience. We also don’t only seek Him for what we need or what He is able to do. Seeking God is an endless journey of discovery as limitless as God Himself.
To seek God is a daily injunction.
Today’s verse speaks of seeking Him with our whole heart, which got me thinking. As we go through life, we’re touched by new experiences, people, and situations. Each day, something is added to who we are. That means that my ‘whole heart’ of yesterday is different to today’s, which is different to tomorrow’s. God is unchanging, unlike us who are continually growing and learning. He is infinite, perfect, and complete and there is always something new to learn about Him. Each time we seek God, we come away with something fresh and powerful. We need to learn to seek God daily with the ‘whole heart’ of each new day. Whatever has touched and changed us will stretch us to receive more revelation of God. The nature and depth of our seeking will change, and what we receive will change accordingly.
We were created as active, dynamic beings. If we are satisfied with yesterday’s relationship and yesterday’s revelation, we cheat ourselves. When we consider how much of God there is to discover, we understand what it means to seek God anew each day. Why settle for second best or for only a small portion of who and what He is? He has so much that He wants to release into our lives and reveal to us. That is such an important part of why He desires relationship with us. Intimacy with Him is a dynamic interaction. On one hand, we are fully satisfied as He fills our whole heart. On the other, we can hunger and thirst for the whole heart of God even when satisfied with today’s revelation.
To seek God has two different dimensions.
On one hand, we seek God as our provider. This is the practical, daily seeking of the God who we know meets all our needs. There is nothing wrong with coming to Him with our requests. He Himself tells us that we must. This also isn’t limited to our financial provision, which is where a lot of believers tend to stop. Complete provision means everything – physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual. He is Lord of all and loves it when His children come in faith to lay their requests before Him. This kind of seeking is a form of praise and worship. It acknowledges Him as Lord of all, as the source of all good things, and reaffirms our faith in Him. It’s a very necessary part of our Christian walk. We manifest faith in Him when we seek Him for our every need.
The problem comes in when we don’t look past this to the other kind of seeking. We fall into the error of seeking God for our needs and no more. To seek God also means to seek relationship. It means to seek the intimacy with Him provided for us through the cross. This has little to do with practical provision and everything to do with the fact that God desires us to know Him. We cannot truly get to know anyone without spending time with them. The same applies to our relationship with Him. Unless we seek God on a deeper level, our knowledge of Him will be limited. For our faith to grow our knowledge of Him must grow. Not head knowledge but intimate knowledge – whole heart knowledge that comes through seeking Him with our whole heart. How we seek determines what we find.
Hunger and thirst are what it is to seek God.
Both hunger and thirst are powerful human motivators. It’s no surprise, then, that God should use these to define spiritual attitude towards spiritual things. They are deep, instinctual things that push us relentlessly towards seeking satisfaction. In this instance, they push us to seek God. Hunger and thirst define a deep, instinctual spirit seeking of God who alone can fill the need. From a purely practical perspective, they are two things we immediately attend to if it’s within our power to do so. If we are hungry, we eat. When thirsty, we will drink. These needs tend to override other things, to the point we even find focus impossible until we have dealt with them. In essence, this describes what it means to seek God with the whole of our heart. It’s the inability to be satisfied unless we find Him and He releases His response to our seeking.
My search today will have a different balance to yesterday. If I seek God today with all my heart, He will respond. That seeking will then have been met. Tomorrow’s search will therefore be different, but He is as ready to meet me as He was yesterday. This is how we are continually taught, guided, and transformed. God has absolutely no desire to keep serving up yesterday’s leftovers. He wants to empower a dynamic and constantly enlarging faith and relationship with Him. Whether we receive this will depend on whether we receive it. That, in turn, depends on whether we seek it by seeking God. We seek God when we hunger and thirst for Him – when He becomes our central, driving need. When we centre our whole heart on the who and what of God, He will release His heart in greater measure in response.
To seek God is an act of worship.
Jesus made it very clear that the Old Testament commandment to love God with all we are has not been nor will be replaced. The word ‘love’ here isn’t about warm and fuzzy feelings. It has nothing to do with the emotions at all. Rather it’s an all-engaging act of worship. To love God is to put Him first in everything, to obey Him, and to acknowledge His sovereign power and will. This entails putting self aside entirely. It is absolute surrender in praise and thanksgiving. Worship is less of what we say and more of what we do and how we live. When we love God, we will seek God. We’ll seek everything about Him, not simply His provision. Holiness, righteousness, and obedience are only some of the things we’ll seek about self. We cannot seek Him without first surrendering self to His sovereign lordship.
In His conversation with the Samaritan woman at the well, Jesus mentions worship in spirit and in truth. It’s easy to focus on one or the other but this is unbalanced worship. The Word is necessary for knowledge, and the Spirit is needed for revelation. The two must always work together when we seek God. If we ignore the Spirit or the Word, we limit the full revelation of God. We may seek Him, but we dictate His response by that with which we are comfortable. True worship, however, is about all – the whole heart. It’s about taking all we are back from self and directing it into a hunger and thirst for God. Anything that humbles self and ignores it gives praise and worship to God. When we diminish self, we automatically magnify God. This is why seeking Him with our whole heart is a humble act of worship.
To seek God is to find ourselves.
To find ourselves has nothing to do with self. It’s the person we are in Christ – the person God created rather than the self the world made us. We were made in the image of God, but our time in the world has ‘remade’ us into the image of the world. We find the ‘real’ person we were created to be only in Him. The first part of today’s verse talks of keeping His testimonies. A testimony is the truth or the proof of the truth. When we seek God, we discover His truth about all things as He reveals it to us. While this concerns all things, it also includes us. We hear directly from Him who we really are. This enables us to shake loose the past and walk in the new creation through the cross.
The blessing is the testimony of who we really are, one which we can keep and hold onto in absolute faith. We discover who we are when we discover who He is. This is the transformation, the resurrection power, we find when we seek Him with all our hearts. We not only discover the endless treasure of the I AM, we find ourselves.
We thank You, Lord, for Your innumerable blessings and for the incredible privilege of relationship with You. Thank You also for the assurance that when we seek You with all our heart we will find You but also find who we really are in You.