DayBreaks for 8/14/17 – Seeking God

DayBreaks for 8/14/17: Seeking God

From the DayBreaks archive, August 2007:

I love the story of the prodigal son.  It is my favorite story that Jesus told.  As a father, I can understand the emotions in the story.  As a wayward child, I can understand what it feels like to return home again.  As the older brother, I can see my envy and pride that keeps me from rejoicing with what is good.  There is one thing, though, that I think is unique about this story.  Jesus describes the father as running to greet his home-coming son.  To the best of my knowledge, I can’t think of another situation in the Bible where God runs to meet anyone.  That doesn’t mean He doesn’t meet them, or come to us.  After all, Jesus “came” to seek and save the lost.  We could not have bridged the gap ourselves by raising ourselves up to heaven to reach Him.  So it is necessary for God to come to us.  But run to us?  That’s something that a father just doesn’t do in the middle eastern cultures.

And while I love the idea that God, in Jesus, stooped so low as to come to us, Jesus also plainly encourages us to “SEEK and ye shall find…”  Elsewhere, we’re told that if we seek God with all our heart, that He will be found.  I find great comfort in that – sort of.  The question is: how do I know when I’m seeking him with ALL my heart?  I can easily deceive myself.

In Hearing God, Dallas Willard talks about our role in seeking God: “Generally speaking, God will not compete for our attention.  Occasionally, a Saul gets knocked to the ground and so on, but we should expect that in most cases God will NOT run over us.  We must be open to the possibility of God’s addressing us in whatever way he chooses, or else we may walk right past a burning bush instead of saying, as Moses did, “I must turn aside and look at this great sight, and see why they bush is not burned up…The reality of God’s voice does not make seeking for it unnecessary.  When I seek for something, I look for it everywhere.  It is when we seek God earnestly, prepared to go out of our way to examine anything that might be his overture toward us – including the most obvious things like Bible verses or our own thoughts – that he promises to be found (Jer. 29:13).  But we will be able to seek Him only if we honestly believe that he might explicitly address us in ways suitable to his purposes in our lives.”

I fear that many times I’m far too lazy.  I want God to do all the work.  And in a sense, He has.  But we must still seek Him while He may be found.  And if we do, it is then that I believe He runs to meet us.

PRAYER: Give us hearts and energy to seek you early in the morning, at noontime, at night, and always.  May we want You more than anything! In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright by 2017 by Galen C. Dalrymple.  ><}}}”>

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DayBreaks for 6/26/15 – Come Out, Come Out, Wherever You Are!

DayBreaks for 6/26/15: Come Out, Come Out, Wherever You Are

Galen is traveling and today’s DayBreaks is from the DayBreaks archive:

I remember playing hide and seek when I was a kid.  No, we didn’t have video games then, so we had to play boring old games where you had to run around and actually expend some energy!  I can’t say that I remember being very good at hide and seek.  Seems that I seldom got found.  Perhaps they just didn’t want to find ME!  But I remember I wasn’t all that great at finding others, either.  And of course, when you couldn’t find someone and you were ready to give up, you’d yell out “Come out, come out, wherever you are!”, and then all those who’d not been found would come out of their hiding places. 

I’m not sure, but I think that perhaps as we get older, we get better at hiding.  We start to hide our feelings (something that little kids can’t do very well), we hide our flaws and quirks, we work very hard at hiding our mistakes in the business world – and if caught – are quick to pass the blame along to someone else, which is really nothing more than another way of hiding. 

The very first game we ever play is usually “peek-a-boo”.  I’ve got to tell you that when I see grown ups acting like crazy folks playing peek-a-boo with their babies, I have to chuckle.  Don’t they know how silly they look?  (Hey – that’s not fair now, I used to play it with my kids – and now my grandkids – but somehow I’m sure I’ve managed to maintain a dignified look when I do it!)  It seems like a simple enough game, doesn’t it?  But it is a very important one, too, if you think about it.

What do babies learn from this simple game?  They learn things that we as adults need to remember rather than forget:

FIRST: we can try to hide ourselves, but we really can’t.  Just because we can’t see someone else (when we cover our eyes), it doesn’t mean that they’re not there.  It just means that our vision is blocked.  We can cover our eyes, but the parents know that we’re still there.  They can still see us with our eyes covered.  God sees us even when we try to blind ourselves to pretend that He’s not there and watching.  We are so foolish!

SECOND: we learn the joy of being “found” again.  The baby that removes their hands from their eyes and again sees mom or dad squeals with delight to be in contact again with the parent.  Their little faces crinkle all up with joy and excitement.  We need to remember the joy of being “found”.  We don’t want to be hidden, isolated, cut off from others.  Most of all, we shouldn’t want to be cut off from God.  But we tend to forget the joyfulness of being “found”.  Oh, that our faces should be like babes faces again and we would squeal with delight at knowing we’ve been found by God, and that we are in His tender care!

It’s been a long time since I’ve played hide-and-seek, but I think I’m about ready again.  How about you?

Copyright by 2005 Galen C. Dalrymple.  ><}}}”>

PRAYER: Jesus, help us to stop playing games and let us rejoice that we have been found!  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

© 2015, Galen C. Dalrymple.

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DayBreaks for 04/09/12 – Playing Hide and Seek With God

DayBreaks for 04/09/12 – Playing Hide and Seek With God

From the DayBreaks archive, 04/02/02:

When I was a kid, I remember that I really enjoyed playing hide and seek.  It was a challenge of creativity to come up with the hiding place where no one would think to look, and to race back to the base and call out “Free!”.

Somehow, as I got older, my attitude about playing hide and seek changed.  It seems to have happened when I had my own kids, and we would play hide and seek.  When one of the kids was “it” and I’d be one of the ones who was supposed to be hiding, I really didn’t try very hard to hide.  Why?  Because I delighted in the squeal of laughter from my kids when they would find me…sometimes “hidden” in plain sight.

God plays hide and seek with us.  According to scripture, He does it much like I did with my kids.  Jeremiah 29:14 says – “I will be found by you,’ declares the LORD, “and I will restore your fortunes and will gather you from all the nations and from all the places where I have driven you,’ declares the LORD, “and I will bring you back to the place from where I sent you into exile.”

God wants to be found!  He wants us to find Him!  And He delights when we do.  At the same time, we would do well to remember that, try as we might, we cannot hide from Him.  It didn’t work for Adam and Eve, Cain, Moses, Jonah or David.  It won’t work for us, either.

Are you seeking God?  He will be found…don’t give up the search!  He’s dying for you to find Him!

PRAYER: We were so lost, Lord, that we didn’t realize we were lost!  Thank You for finding us, and for delighting in our finding of You!  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2012 by Galen C. Dalrymple.

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