While fox hunting in Britain has fallen upon hard times, those who have indulged in the practice say the thrill is in the chase, somewhat the same way a young man feels pursuing the girl of his dreams. And while there may be a measure of truth in the fact that the pursuit may be more glamorous than the catch, the fact is you run to win, not just get exercise. Lately, I’ve noticed a growing number of books that focus on searching for God. I’ve read them, and after I’ve read them, I’ve closed the cover slightly dissatisfied because I had the feeling that the focus is on the search for God but falls short of connecting with God.
Vast numbers of people can identify with searching for God—pagans as well as seekers. It’s a religious pursuit, something which people have done from the beginning of time. I have read of individuals who spent their entire lives in a spiritual search, sometimes traveling from place to place, studying under various gurus, spending their fortunes, to find God. Searching for God is akin to an orphan’s wondering who his parents are, and what they are like; and if he found them, would he be warmly received or rejected as unwanted baggage?
Seekers can be completely sincere and their quest completely authentic, yet their lives are an ongoing frustration, seeking without finding, pursuing without reaching an objective. Question: Is God hidden whereby only a few find Him? Does He play a game of hide and seek, always besting us as would an evil father who calls for his child to come but hides when he approaches?
You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:13
“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart,” God told His people through Jeremiah in the book that bears his name (Jeremiah 29:13). On the cross, a thief, believing that the one hanging between him and another criminal was God’s Son, cried out, “Remember me when you come into your kingdom!” And Jesus responded, “Today you will be with me in Paradise!” His search for God took only a few minutes.
Recently a strapping young man standing about 6’5″ weighing about 330 pounds was assigned to be my escort at a speaking engagement. As we chatted I asked, “How did you become a believer?” He explained that he was in prison, the result of having abused his wife. Holding out his wrists, he showed me the scars from breaking two sets of handcuffs—snapping them like Samson did his cords. He said in one altercation, he had been knocked down, lying face down in a pool of his own blood with two policemen holding arms and legs on each side, with the foot of another policeman standing on his neck.
“Jesus,” he cried out. “Save me!” Having been raised in a Christian home, he had drifted far from God, but in that instant, he said, “God saved me and changed my life.”
He introduced me to his wife and children as a testimony to the fact that you don’t have to search long for God when in absolute sincerity you throw yourself upon Him.
Fearing that the fishing boat on stormy Galilee would sink, Peter once cried out, “Lord, save us, or we’re going to perish!” It was enough. Jesus quelled the storm.
Perhaps it’s time to stop searching and connect. God hears and answers the heart cry of a man or woman who gets to the end of himself and throws himself at the mercy of the Almighty.
For some, searching may be the main thing, but for me, finding God brought satisfaction and joy which searching never satisfied. Think about it.
Resource reading: Daniel 6:10-24