Seek the Lord: Seek His face

Isaiah_55-6The Verse of the Day for October 5, 2015 provides this directive from Isaiah 55:6 (NLT):

Seek the Lord while you can find him. Call on him now while he is near.

What does “seek the Lord” really mean? In the Old Testament, to seek the Lord means to seek “God’s presence,” which is often expressed as to seek His face.” In Psalm 27:7-9 (NKJV) we find this reference:

 Hear, O Lord, when I cry with my voice!
Have mercy also upon me, and answer me.

When You said, “Seek My face,”
My heart said to You, “Your face, Lord, I will seek.”

9Do not hide Your face from me;
Do not turn Your servant away in anger;
You have been my help;
Do not leave me nor forsake me,
O God of my salvation.

As believers we are ever seeking the Lord, as we desire or long to abide in His presence. Once again, the Psalmist makes known that in His presence is fullness of joy, at God’s right hand there are pleasures evermore. Throughout the Scriptures, we are encouraged to “Seek the Lord continually; seek his presence continually.”

With that exhortation to seek the Lord comes the assurance that if we will seek Him, we will find him. Jeremiah 29:11-13 offer this reassurance:

11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. 12 Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. 13 And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.

1 Chronicles 28:9 reiterates the same message that “If you seek him, he will be found by you.” And when you find that which you are seeking, you will find great reward: “But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.”(Hebrews 11:6–NKJV)

Our quest of seeking the presence of God is ongoing, as the following poem reminds us:

Watching, Waiting, Seeking

Wait on the Lord; be of good courage,

and He shall strengthen your heart;

wait, I say, on the Lord!

Psalm 27:14

We are strengthened by the words of the bard gone blind,

Who said, “They also serve who only stand and wait.”

We look into the mirror of God’s word and find

That God has always been faithful and never late.

Once more we release the reigns, and we yield control.

Like Job we wait until at last our change shall come,

Assured that in patience we now anchor our soul.

May we not faint and fall by the wayside as some

But follow in Christ’s steps, as we quickly obey

And bear up under and yield fruit of endurance.

We must walk in God’s love, the more excellent way

And through faith and patience claim our inheritance.

In these perilous times we are yielded and still,

Watching, waiting, seeking to fulfill all God’s will.

In reflecting upon seeking the presence of God, I thought of the lyrics of the Don Moen song “My Soul Follows Hard after Thee”

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