Summary: This sermon explores the benefits of seeking the Lord and helps aid the Christian in how to seek.
Having a heart that seeks wholly after God is the one sure way for living and fulfilling the Christian life to its full potential; however, it is also a difficult endeavor. It is not difficult because it is complicated but because human nature gets in the way. By nature, we seek our own good and we seek our ways first. Even when we seek to do good our motivations are usually self-centered. We do good because it makes us feel good; we seek God because we see the benefit His goodness has in our lives. While it is true that we cannot separate the benefits God gives from the relationship we have with Him, the benefits should not be our sole motivation. We are human and it is not possible to be completely selfless; however, it is possible to seek God for the purpose of knowing Him and not merely seeking the rewards in His hand. God told Abraham, “I am your exceedingly great reward”. Knowing Him is our greatest reward and nothing in this life can truly be enjoyed as it was intended outside of Christ.
When we know God and see how His goodness is revealed through everything in this life, only then are we able to truly appreciate the things of this life. When God’s purpose is removed, things take on an unbalanced value that creates a void in our life rather than a blessing. 1 John states it well:
1 John 2:15-17 15 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world -- the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life -- is not of the Father but is of the world. 17 And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.
By nature, our affections are drawn to this world and if this world becomes our love, this is the evidence that we are not walking in the love of God. Is there anything you possess that would be devastating if you lost it today? When God is our reward, the things of this life have their rightful place. Nothing balances the life of the Christian other than seeking the Lord. In Him life has meaning, purpose, fulfillment and balance.
Seeking comes from God
All good things have their source in God. This goes for every good thing in the Christian’s life. Our righteousness is not our own, but is a gift from God (2 Cor 5:21), our works come from God (Ephesians 2:10), the fruit of our labors comes from God (John 15:4-5) and even our faith comes from God (Romans 12:3). This is also true for seeking God. No one seeks after God; we either respond to God drawing us or we resist God’s call. Look at Psalm 14:2-3
2 The LORD looks down from heaven upon the children of men, To see if there are any who understand, who seek God. 3 They have all turned aside, They have together become corrupt; There is none who does good, No, not one.
This is reiterated in Romans 3:12. By nature, we seek our own lusts, turn aside after our desires and put our affections on the things that promise to fulfill us. In reality, nothing can fulfill our desires outside of God. The scriptures say it well in Proverbs 27:20b, “The eyes of man are never satisfied”. We spend our lives grasping for the final thing we need that will satisfy us only to find out that in a few days it no longer provides the satisfaction we hoped for. We are all guilty of being self-centered and spending our energy on gratifying ourselves with this passing life rather than seeking the eternal things of God.
Fortunately our God is patient and loving. When God’s people turned from Him and His anger was kindled, the Bible says that God called into remembrance that man is only dust. We are not capable of seeking spiritual things without first having the Spirit of God working within us to produce these things. God draws us to Christ for salvation and then God draws us to Himself to gain the things of the Spirit. It begins with God’s call to come. Look at Isaiah 55:1-3
"Ho! Everyone who thirsts, Come to the waters; And you who have no money, Come, buy and eat. Yes, come, buy wine and milk Without money and without price. 2 Why do you spend money for what is not bread, And your wages for what does not satisfy? Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good, And let your soul delight itself in abundance. 3 Incline your ear, and come to Me. Hear, and your soul shall live; And I will make an everlasting covenant with you -- The sure mercies of David.