Let’s look at some passages to determine the kind of fervency that’s involved in seeking the Lord...
The Lord is searching the world over to try and see if He can find someone whose heart is completely His. "For the eyes of the LORD move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His." (2Ch 16:9a)
"As the deer pants for the water brooks, So my soul pants for You, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God; When shall I come and appear before God?" (Psa 42:1-2)
When we pant for something literally, it means our chest is heaving, as in short respiration or want of breath. It means figuratively “To long for; to desire ardently.”So we could translate this verse to say, “Lord, my soul desires you so ardently with such a longing that it’s like when a deer has been running and it’s heaving in short breathes, desperately trying to get enough air, searching for water from the brook to quench its thirst.”
The psalmist sought the Lord with all His heart. He said, "With all my heart I have sought You; Do not let me wander from Your commandments." (Psa 119:10) "I sought Your face with all my heart; Be gracious to me according to Your word." (Psa 119:58)
He prayed, "My soul languishes for Your salvation; I wait for Your word. My eyes fail with longing for Your word, While I say, 'When will You comfort me?' " (Psa 119:81-82). How many of us pray that way? Do we search in His Word like we are searching for buried treasure, so that our eyes fail longing for His Word?
The psalmist lost sleep over his quest for the Lord, and he saw the late and early hours as prime time to cry out to the Lord, wait for Him, and meditate on His Word: "I rise before dawn and cry for help; I wait for Your words. My eyes anticipate the night watches, That I may meditate on Your word." (Psa 119:147-148). That's fervency!! That's ardent love!
He sought the Lord earnestly with a great thirst and hunger for God: "God, You are my God; I shall seek You earnestly; My soul thirsts for You, my flesh yearns for You, In a dry and weary land where there is no water." (Psa 63:1)
The prophet Hosea admonishes us, "So let us know, let us press on to know the LORD. His going forth is as certain as the dawn; And He will come to us like the rain, Like the spring rain watering the earth." (Hos 6:3) In this verse from Hosea, the word for “press on” comes from the Hebrew word “rawdaf”. According to Strong’s it is a primitive root that means “to run after” (usually with hostile intent; figuratively). It also means, among other things “to chase”, “hunt,” or “pursue.” So with this understanding, we could translate this verse thusly: “So let us know, let us run after the Lord to know Him..." Or “let us pursue the Lord relentlessly, as though we were hunting for Him so that we might truly know Him.” God loves to be pursued by you, and if you seek Him this way you will surely find Him.
The apostle Paul pressed on toward the goal for the prize like a runner running a great race. "Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus." (Phi 3:12) And again he states, "I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." (Phi 3:14)
The writer of Hebrews exhorts, "Therefore leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ, let us press on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God," (Heb 6:1) The word we translate as “Press on” here in this passage is “phero”. It means to “be driven,” in such a way that one is “rushing.” It implies a “reaching” for something ahead. So we could translate this verse like this: “let us be driven to maturity, in such a way that we are rushing after it and reaching out for it, not moving backwards and laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God.
So from God’s Word we can see that seeking His face is not something passive at all. Rather, it is very active and very aggressive. It requires our whole heart, soul, mind, and strength.
The Lord is searching the world over to try and see of He can find someone whose heart is completely His. Is every ounce of your being completely His? Do you daily seek to surrender yourself completely to Him? Do you desire the Lord so ardently with such a longing that it’s like when a deer has been running and it’s heaving in short breathes, desperately trying to get enough air? Are you pressing on toward the goal for the prize like a runner running a marathon, determined to win? Are you running after the Lord to know Him? Have you lost any sleep over your quest for the Lord?
If you didn’t answer yes to these questions, then let me encourage you to pursue the Lord relentlessly, as though we were hunting for Him! Take advantage of the late and early hours of the day when everyone else is asleep to cry out to the Lord, wait for Him, and meditate on His Word. Seek the Lord with all your heart. Let me encourage you to be driven to maturity, in such a way that you are rushing after it and reaching out for it. This is not at all a passive act, but something that you give yourself to completely.
If you will do this, the wonderful promise to you is that the Lord will strongly support you. Not that I have already attained to perfection in this area, but I’m with D.L. Moody, who once said, “The world has yet to see what God can do with and for and through and in and by the man who is fully and wholly consecrated to Him. I will try my utmost to be that man.”
Attribution notice: Most Scripture quotations taken from the NASB.
Author's note: This "Seeking the Lord" blog has become very popular in France. The reason for this is uncertain, but I am humbled and delighted that it has generated such a great interest there. To God be all the glory! If you enjoyed this post, you may also like the other posts in this blog available through the links in the side bar. You may also access my blog directory at "Writing for the Master."
Do You Want to Know Him?
If you want to know Jesus personally, you can. It all begins when you repent and believe in Jesus. Do you know what God's Word, the Bible says?
“Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.’” (Mar 1:14b-15). He preached that we must repent and believe.
Please see my explanation of this in my post called "Do You Want to Know Jesus?"
Len Lacroix is the founder of Doulos Missions International. He was based in Eastern Europe for four years, making disciples, as well as helping leaders to be more effective at making disciples who multiply, developing leaders who multiply, with the ultimate goal of planting churches that multiply. His ministry is now based in the United States with the same goal of helping fulfill the Great Commission. www.dmiworld.org.