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What does it really mean to “seek the Lord?” When we draw near to God, what takes place in our lives? What are the results and benefits that come
if we seek Him?
Our natural tendency as human beings is to be self-sufficient. For some reason, when trouble comes to us, it is sometimes the farthest thought from our minds simply to draw near to Jesus and ask for His help. In this letter, we cover a principle that is very basic, but absolutely foundational to our faith—
the necessity of seeking the Lord.
God’s messages often come to me in unexpected ways. What I will share in this letter is no exception to that fact. I saw this basic truth during a recent time of prayer.
One of the national directors of Derek Prince Ministries had contacted a number of the leaders of DPM with a prayer concern. His wife had gone to her doctor for a routine follow-up visit, and in the examination, a rather suspicious-looking lump was found. As regularly happens in cases like this, our friend and colleague sent out a rather urgent email asking for the prayers of his DPM brothers and sisters around the world.
On one of the days I was interceding for this situation as I drove to work, I found myself praying: “…and deliver my dear sister from all her fears of cancer.” I knew the phrase, “delivered me from all my fears” was in a psalm, but I wasn’t sure which one. When I arrived at the office, I located the verse. Psalm 34:4 says, “I sought the
, and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.” That moment was the catalyst for a wider study of similar verses which concentrate on what takes place
if we seek Him.
He Will Hear Us
I discovered some encouraging insights from these passages about seeking the Lord. I found that in most cases, the statement that follows “I sought the Lord” is: “and He heard me.” Time and time again, we read in the Word of God that when we draw near to the Lord, He inclines His ear to hear us.
Two verses later in Psalm 34:6, David says, referring to himself: “This poor man cried out, and the LORD heard him, and saved him out of all his troubles.” Psalm 9:10 promises that God won’t ignore us when we come to Him: “And those who know Your name will put their trust in You; for You,
, have not forsaken those who seek You.”
In the New Testament, James shares a direct, profound promise for you and me in chapter 4, verse 8: “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” What a wonderful benefit of seeking the Lord—the assurance that
He will listen to us
if we seek Him!
Meeting the Conditions
The prospect of God listening to us and hearing us when we call to Him is amazing in itself. It parallels the simple statement from Jesus in Matthew 7:7–8: “Ask, and it will be given to you;
seek and you will find
….” We see a similar theme in Jeremiah 29:13–14: “And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart. I will be found by you, says the
….” God promises to be found—
if we seek Him.
The verse from Jeremiah brings up an important factor in this process. There are conditions we must meet, and consequences we will experience if we don’t meet them. David’s words to his son, Solomon, in 1 Chronicles 28:9b fall into this category: “If you seek Him, He will be found by you; but if you forsake Him, He will cast you off forever.”
We see a similar lesson in the life of Asa—who was, for the most part, a righteous king of Judah. When threatened by an army of a million Ethiopians in 2 Chronicles 14, Asa relied upon the Lord: “Help us, O
our God, for we rest on You, and in Your name we go against this multitude” (v. 11). After Asa’s victory, the prophet Azariah warned him in 2 Chronicles 15:2: “The
is with you while you are with Him. If you seek Him, He will be found by you; but if you forsake Him, He will forsake you.”
Sadly, in a later battle, Asa ignored this warning. Rather than relying on the Lord for help, he chose to make a treaty with Syria. Asa forgot the priority
to seek Him.
The Necessity of Waiting
In an inspiring message called “Taking Time to Wait on God,” Derek Prince draws the parallel between “waiting on God” and “seeking the Lord.” Whichever term we might use for our pursuit of the Lord’s will for us, Derek makes it clear that this practice is an absolute necessity in our lives. True meaning in life comes only
if we seek Him.
In 1 Thessalonians 1:9–10, Paul was writing to some of the earliest Christians—probably one of the first letters he wrote. Speaking about the impact the gospel had made in Thessalonica, he says:
For they themselves declare concerning us what manner of entry we had to you in Thessalonica, and how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, and to wait for His Son from heaven.
Notice, they turned to do two things: to serve and to wait. That is the totality of the Christian life. Serving is not all of it. In fact, serving is very incomplete if it is not accompanied by waiting. We serve; we wait. The Bible—in more than fifty places—speaks about the need or the necessity of waiting on God or for God.
At the end of “Taking Time to Wait on God,” Derek shares what happened at a conference where the attendees devoted themselves to this pursuit: “When people give themselves to seeking the Lord over a three-week period, one might expect that they would end up being drawn into intimacy with Him. And so it was.” They came to a deep realization of the need to return to their first love and make Jesus the center.
Renewing Our Commitment
Has this letter refreshed your intention to seek the Lord in all things? Are you longing for a renewal of your first love and intimacy with Jesus? If you sense something stirring in your heart to commit yourself more deeply to the practice of drawing near to the Lord, why don’t you and I voice that desire in a prayer together right now?
Lord Jesus, I am thankful for the reminder in this letter about my need to seek You in everything I do in life. With this deliberate prayer, I set my face to renew the practice of drawing near to You for every task, every decision, every challenge, and every obligation. I know the blessings that come if I seek You. I also realize the greatest benefit of all is finding You and hearing Your voice.
In all aspects of my life, I will seek Your face, Lord, knowing that when I come to You, I can be sure You are listening to me. You hear my voice, and You respond to my cry with needed help and strength. It is You who will provide all that I need, and You will save me from the troubles that beset me. Please forgive me for the times when I have forsaken You rather than seeking You. I receive Your forgiveness, and in this moment, I draw near to You, knowing that as I pray right now, You are also drawing near to me. Amen.
Immersed in the Word
In addition to frequent prayers like the one you and I just offered, one of the best ways to draw near to the Lord and hear His direction is through teaching centered on the Word. As you know, a focus on the Bible is the hallmark of Derek Prince’s ministry—and we are very happy to make his materials available to you. Please feel free to use the link below to download a free MP3 of the message from which we took his quote: “Taking Time to Wait on God.”
The archive of Derek’s teaching is wide-ranging, and we are working diligently to see it produced, translated, and distributed all around the world. Your prayers and gifts make it possible for us to hit those goals, and we simply can’t thank you enough!
“Seek, and you will find.” Such a simple, profound promise from our Lord Jesus. If we seek the Lord, we will find Him. In fact, God assures us with His own words: “I will be found by you.” What a source of comfort and strength to us—every day of our lives!
It is so important that we regularly draw near to Him in the way David directed in 1 Chronicle 28:9. In some of his last advice to his son, Solomon, David encouraged him to "serve Him with a loyal heart and with a willing mind.”
The rewards and benefits of that kind of willingness and obedience are evident: the Lord will listen to our prayers, strengthen us for every task in life, and help us with every challenge we may face. But above all else, we will find Jesus—
if we seek Him.
All the best,
P.S. We send our love and appreciation for your devotion to Derek Prince Ministries, and for the vital role you play in this continuing work. Thank you so much! Please remember to download the free message, “Taking Time to Wait on God.”