Prayer and the Presence of God, 1

Seeking GodExodus 33:13-15,  Now therefore, I pray thee, if I have found grace in thy sight, shew me now thy way, that I may know thee, that I may find grace in thy sight: and consider that this nation is thy people. 14  And he said, My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest. 15  And he said unto him, If thy presence go not with me, carry us not up hence.

Psalm 27:4, 8,    One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to enquire in his temple. … 8  When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, LORD, will I seek.

Jeremiah 29:12-13,    Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you. 13  And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.

There’s far more to the Christian life–the Christian experience–at least there should be, than simply going to church, doing good works, and throwing some money in the offering plate. The Christian life is all about knowing, loving, and becoming like Jesus [Philippians 3:7-15]! If we are going to grow in our knowledge of Christ [2 Peter 3:18], grow in our love for Christ and others [Matthew 22:37-39], and if we are going to have our hearts and lives transformed into the image of Christ [Romans 8:28-29; 12:1-2; 2 Corinthians 3:17-18], we are going to have to seek His presence in prayer!

Whether it was Moses seeking the presence of God in his life and ministry prior to making another move for God, or David responding to the call of God to seek His face, or God’s promise to His people in Babylonian captivity that they would find Him if they sought Him with all of their hearts or the dozens of other passages that could be noted it is clear in the scriptures that God is not only looking for a people who will SERVE HIM, but God is looking for a people who will SEEK HIM! As one author has noted:

“Today the heart of God is an open wound of love. He aches over our distance and preoccupation. He mourns that we do not draw near to him. He grieves that we have forgotten him. He weeps over our obsession with muchness and manyness. He longs for our presence. … For too long we have been in a far country: a country of noise and hurry and crowds, a country of climb and push and shove, a country of frustration and fear and intimidation.”

Far too many of God’s people tend to plateau in their Christian life. We get to a place where we are saved, our sins are forgiven, great changes have taken place in our life, we are faithful to church, we are giving financially to the Lord, and we are involved with a ministry or two, but then something happens …. WE STOP GROWING! 

In many cases, what has happened is we have succumbed to what some have called the COMPLACENCY DISEASE. We have become comfortable and we have stopped SEEKING GOD, if we ever sought Him in the first place. And we stop growing! Another author wrote:

“It is not too much to say that all real growth in the spiritual life– all victory over temptation, all confidence and peace in the presence of difficulties and dangers, all repose of spirit in times of great disappointment or loss, all habitual communion with God– depend upon the practice of secret prayer. … Why do most men see so few brought ‘out of darkness to light’ by their ministry? Because they pray so little. Why are not our churches simply on fire for God? Because there is so little real prayer.”

We become like the church of Ephesus in Revelation chapter two. We believe all the right things. We are doing all the right things. Yet, there is something missing. There’s something wrong. We have left our fist love.

Revelation 2:4,  Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.

The solution to this problem is to get back to SEEKING GOD!

God knows we all become busy. We all become preoccupied with many things, and in many cases, they are good things. Unfortunately, like Martha of old in the midst of our busyness doing the GOOD THINGS, we have neglected the GOD THING [Luke 10:38-42]!

It might be time to get back to basics. And there is nothing more basic in the life of a follower of Christ than to SEEK GOD!

“Every time I set my face to seeking God in a fresh way, God begins to change my heart, my mind, my preaching, and my leadership skills. When any believer commits his or her heart to seeking the Lord, everything is going to change.”

Just reflecting!!!

 

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