Sunday, February 1, 2009

Continuous Pursuit (church bulletin cover)

We've just had a week of extraordinary 24/7 corporate prayer and worship -- all after three and a half extraordinary years of 24/7 prayer and worship! How amazing to be able to spend so much time with such an awesome God! And why wouldn't we want to spend so much time with Him? We have the privilege of being able to draw close to the living God of the universe and, through prayer, to be a part of what He is doing throughout the earth!

And the more we get to know God and what He's capable of doing, the less it makes sense to miss out on time spent with Him. I'm sure that's what the writer of Psalm 105 must have thought. For in the midst of a psalm that tells of God's wonderful works amidst His people is a little verse that says, "Seek the Lord and His strength; seek His presence continually!" (v.4). Continually! And why wouldn't a person do that if they realized "the wonderful works that He has done, His miracles, and the judgments He uttered" (v.5) throughout history?

Yet I know how capable I am of getting on with my personal history with its busy days, urgent tasks, and long to-do lists with little more than occasional cries for help. My prayers feel rushed and my prayer times random. That's why I would love for those ten words of Psalm 105:4 to sink deep into my soul so that I'm never satisfied with fly-by prayers, but feel compelled instead to seek God -- to seek His presence -- to seek His strength -- and to do so continually! This verse is an invitation to deeply enjoy God for who He is and for all He has done for His people. That's why Psalm 105 begins with words like "give thanks" and "sing praises" and "glory" and "rejoice" before it then urges us to continually seek the One so worthy of such responses.

All this suggests more than just a brief prayer time on our knees, though such times are good. These opening verses, and the rest of Psalm 105, are about a God-consciousness that is ongoing -- that drives us to our knees and then stays with us as we rise up and get on with our day. It's a continuous seeking so that we might know that God is in every circumstance of our lives -- the triumphs and the disappointments -- and that He gives us the strength we need for both.

So even though our week of extraordinary corporate prayer is behind us, I hope that as we all get to know God better and better, we will be eager to carry on seeking His presence continually! Knowing Him as much as I do already, I know that such a pursuit will not be disappointing.

© 2009 by Ken Peters

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