Summary: I’m 77 years old. By God’s mercy and His undeserved grace I’ve known Jesus as Lord and Savior for more than a half century. I’ll admit right now, I’m writing this to stir myself to biblical action where I see that I’ve fallen short. I suspect this message from God’s holy Word will also speak to the hearts of many of you, my fellow believers. So I invite you to join with me in a time of self-examination in the light of the Scriptures.
When the Lord said, “Seek My face,” the psalmist’s heart was stirred to obedience: “Your face, O Lord, I shall seek.” Have you been sensing God’s call to seek Him, to seek His face, to draw closer to Him? I have, and I want to obey His call better than I have to date.
The psalm reveals God’s heart reaching out to us for our well-being. He desires us to seek Him, to know Him better. God always desires what is good for us. In fact, knowing God the Father and His Son Jesus is at the very heart of salvation unto eternal life — Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent (John 17:3).
God has been impressing on me that prayerful seeking of Him (seeking “His face”) is not an option; it’s a commandment. The Chronicler wrote: “
Almost 50 years ago the Holy Spirit spoke this verse very clearly to me personally. It came to me as a prophetic word and direction to my heart. What was its scope? — Every work I would do in the service of God’s “house” (His church) and in His Word (the “law…[and] commandments”). And what direction did I receive in it from the Lord? — to seek God with all my heart. Only then would I prosper in those works.
As I reflect back over those past five decades, what do I see? I believe I’ve been diligent to seek God in his Word and in preaching and teaching His Word. I believe I’ve been less diligent in “seeking His face continually” in regular, prolonged times of prayer, meditation, and personal worship. In these autumn years of my life I am determined to correct this, with the Lord’s gracious help. I am hoping for the same for any among you whose heart the Lord is touching.
Jesus’ original apostles became extremely busy in the rapidly growing Jerusalem church. Their time and energies were being spread too thin by trying to do too many things. So they set in the church 7 deacons to attend to certain matters, so that they (the apostles) could prioritize two main ministries: 1) prayer and 2) the ministry of the Word. These great heroes of our faith — Peter, John, Matthew and others — realized the urgent importance of seeking the Lord in prayer, along with devoting themselves to ministering His Word to others.
We don’t need to be apostles to draw from their excellent example. That is, set lesser priorities in their appropriate place and concentrate much focus and energy on seeking God and His Word, in order to be better equipped to be lights for Him to this dark world.
We saw in John 17:3 (above) that the essence of eternal life is knowing God the Father and His Son Jesus, the Lord and Savior. Not just knowing about, but knowing in a deep and personal way.
God has given Christians the Holy Spirit for a variety of beneficial purposes. One of those works of the Spirit in us is to reveal the Father and the Son to us, so that we may know them better (see also John 15:26).
Let’s close with our opening Scripture. God’s will and desire for us is that we seek His face. That is, seek Him, pray to Him, draw near to Him, meditate upon Him, worship Him, and the like. Has God touched your heart so that you too are feeling this divine drawing to seek after Him and grow ever closer to Him in times of prayer and devotion? How about each of us joining together in an informal way and asking God to pour out upon each of us daily a “spirit of prayer” (Zechariah 12:10 & others).
As more and more believers “seek the Lord and His strength [and] seek His face continually” (Psalm 105:4), not only will our own walk with the Lord be greatly strengthened, but also our prayerful seeking of God can have a dramatic reviving effect on our cities and nations:
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©2020, James H. Feeney.
Pentecostal Sermons &
Bible Studies by
Pastor Jim Feeney, Ph.D.