We’re all commanded to seek God (Is 55:6); both the wicked (7) and the righteous. (Zep 2:3) What does this mean, to seek God?
Our inability to connect with God isn’t because He’s unavailable or far away (Ac 17:27-28a); His intent has always been to walk in fellowship with us (Ge 3:8a), and He hasn’t changed. (Ma 3:6)
The problem is us: selfish, stubborn, rebellious, callous (Ro 1:21) — we’ve run away from God and tried to hide from Him (Ge 3:8b), trained ourselves to ignore and dismiss Him, broken our own ability to enjoy Him. (Ro 1:28)
Our behavior here is totally inexcusable, indefensible; it’s actually horrific and makes God very angry (Ro 1:18); He’s jealous of our affections and loyalties, and He’s in this relationship to stay … He will not tolerate our neglect of Him. (Ex 20:5)
So, the first step in seeking God is to repent (Lk 13:3), acknowledge that we are the problem in this divine relationship and not God. We need to change our mind about God (He 11:6) and sin (1Jn 3:4): start loving and honoring God (De 6:5), obeying Him and relating with Him as best we know how. (1Jn 5:3)
This first step is necessary: we’ve gone far away from Him (Is 53:6a); so, to find God we must at least try to start walking in His general direction. (Ps 119:10) But this is insufficient in itself: we can clean up our act to make ourselves look good … and not be seeking Him. (Jn 5:42)
In our obedience we must also seek understanding (Col 1:9), to align ourselves at every level with spiritual truth. Yet it’s easy to confuse theology and religion with God, and pursue Man’s way of engaging the divine rather than Divinity Himself. We may know it all, but if we don’t know God (Jn 17:3) … it’s pointless. (1Co 13:2)
We can dedicate our lives to serving others, donate all our wealth to humanitarian causes, and even die the martyr’s death — but we can be self-serving in all of it, and that’s worthless. (1Co 13:3)
We weren’t born with an inclination toward God (Ro 3:11); we’re instinctively averse to God (Ro 8:7) and this is our fundamental problem. Our selfish nature is constantly interfering (Ro 7:18), and the evil one is constantly tempting and attacking us. (Ep 6:12) Our ability to self-deceive is insidiously profound, entrenched in life-long patterns of pride (Ps 10:4) and rebellion. (Ja 1:22)
To start seeking God Himself we must get over ourselves and get out of our own way. (2Ti 2:25) Our pride and self-centeredness is what is keeping us from Him, nothing more. (Is 59:2) Personal suffering is what wakes us up (Ps 73:5-6), so God chastens us (14); we all need this. (He 12:6)
To find God Himself we must be seeking the Giver rather the gift; desiring the Blessed Himself rather than to be blessed; walking not merely in holiness (He 12:14) but with Holiness, pursuing God’s heart and mind, not just following His Way.
To help us understand how the divine relationship works, earthly relationships are a picture and a mirror, similar in many ways, particularly the marriage relationship. (Ep 5:31-32) In healthy marriages we’re present and focused, exploring our spouse’s mind and heart, looking to live in close intimacy and harmony with another soul. God teaches us how to focus on one another so we can see how to focus on Him in the ultimate, eternal relationship.
Seeking God means arranging our thoughts and actions to fully engage in vibrant, intimate, continuous personal fellowship with the living God, focusing on knowing and understanding Him (Je 9:24), delighting in God Himself (Ps 27:4) and rejoicing in Him. (Php 4:4)
To enable our seeking, God is revealing Himself in a variety of ways: through Nature (Ps 19:1-3), through those in Whom He lives. (1Ti 3:15), and through His written Word (Ro 15:4), especially Torah, the Law of Moses. (Lk 16:31) In seeking God we maximize every opportunity to understand His self-revelation and realign with Him on every level we can.
To seek God we saturate our minds with His Word, particularly Torah (Ps 119:97), memorizing it and prayerfully meditating on it all the time (Ps 1:2), asking God to reveal more and more Himself to us (Ps 119:18) and cleanse us of all hinderance in our fellowship with Him (Ps 19:12), continuously aware of and cherishing every single moment as the perfect gift of God’s immediate presence (Ja 1:17), inviting those pursuing God (Ps 119:79) to encourage and challenge us along the way. (Ro 15:14)