“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart” (Jeremiah 29:13).
Love the Word
Have you ever done anything halfheartedly? How did it make you feel in the end? Unfortunately, due to our sinful nature, we often find ourselves in tasks where we do not give our all, even in our pursuit of God. The result is a 360-degree dissatisfaction. We dishonor God, ourselves, and those we attempt to serve in our lackluster fashion. The first step in experiencing restoration of this inner flaw is to pursue God with all our hearts.
Learn the Word
We don’t seek God because we hide from Him. The cause is pride. Our motive is fear. We harden our hearts to our Creator, hiding in one of two caves: legalism or license. Legalism is self-righteous pretense. We mechanically obey God’s laws for fear of losing our reward and receiving judgment. We expect, at minimum, a one-for-one blessing. On the other end of the spectrum, license is willful disobedience. We hide here for fear of losing control and pleasure. Whether we hide in the cave of legalism or license, we operate from self-reliance, and we do not seek God with all our hearts.
The good news is that God seeks us first (see Isaiah 65:1). He restores our hearts when we wholeheartedly seek Him in return. Hanani the seer told Judah’s King Asa: “For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him” (2 Chronicles 16:9a). God can find anyone. The writer of Hebrews observed: “Nothing in creation is hidden from God’s sight” (Hebrews 4:13). God’s pursuit of us warrants that we seek Him with all our hearts.
When God calls, pride hides, but humility seeks.
Christ is the humility of God (see Matthew 11:29). His cave is empty. Paul preached God’s continual pursuit of His creation that led to the coming of Christ: “God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us. For in him, we live and move and have our being” (Acts 17:27-28).
King David, the man after God’s own heart, knew much about hiding in caves. He charged his son, Solomon, with these words: “And you, my son Solomon, acknowledge the God of your father, and serve him with wholehearted devotion and with a willing mind, for the LORD searches every heart and understands every motive behind the thoughts. If you seek him, he will be found by you; but if you forsake him, he will reject you forever” (1 Chronicles 28:9).
Live the Word
Memorize Jeremiah 29:13 and recite it each day for the next thirty days. SEEK God with all your heart. Surrender your pride to the LORD. Embrace Christ. Exit the cave of self-reliance. Keep surrendering. You will find intimacy with Him.