Seek the LORD and his strength,

seek his presence continually.

1 Chronicles 16: 11

 

These lines are taken out of David’s great song of thanksgiving and praise to God that was to be sung before the Ark of the Covenant. These words remind me of something that is truly important to keep in mind all of the time. Although, I know that God is present continually and that He is everywhere and in everything, He can seem quite distant at times. When this is true, it is not God who has gone away or who has fallen silent; rather, I am the one who has created the distance, and I have covered my ears so that the Lord’s voice is not so near or sounding all that clear to me. As a follower of Christ, distance from God is something that I cause. The distance that translates into separation is formed by the wandering nature of my heart. It usually comes about when I want to think and to act in a manner that is of my own choosing and that runs counter to the way that Christ desires for me to live.

 

The route back into the presence of the Lord is right in front of me, if I will simply relent from my self-determined path, repent of the sinfulness of my heart, and seek out the truth of God’s Word and the guidance of His Spirit. That sounds simple enough, but the longer I am off on my own separate journey and the farther that my wandering takes me from the Lord’s light of truth, the harder it is to come back into His presence. This happens, in part, because sinful habits are oppressive and even addicting. This journey away from God also tends to leave us isolated from His body of faith, and so, we. Become separated from the people who will support, counsel, and shepherd us into faithful and righteous thought and actions. Thus, David’s counsel about the way that we approach life on a regular basis is important.

 

Almost everyone faces times of temptation, doubt, and weakness. As we know from his story, David had to respond to all of these emotional and spiritual situations in his life, and his experienced wisdom led him to remind each of us to be seekers after God and His strength so that we will stay intent on following the Lord’s words of wisdom and remaining in the center of His righteous presence. This is something that we can do on an on-going basis. As the song states, “seek his presence continually.” This focus upon Christ is a subtext that runs throughout the conduct of every aspect and within each moment of the day. There is nothing that we do or place that we might go where the Lord is not in it and with us. He desires to set the tone for our speech and to grant us His moral and ethical guidance for each decision that we make and action that we take. It is Christ’s strength that empowers a righteous life, and it is His presence that guides us into living as children of heavenly light.