Lately, this one word has been deeply impressed upon my heart—the pursuit of this one man, Jesus. What does it mean to truly pursue God with all that we have? This word is used so often amongst us in messages or in preachings that we hear but I want to bring perspective to this and dwell deeper on this beautiful concept.
A couple of months ago, while I was playing some tunes on my keyboard, I got this vision of Jesus standing ahead of me with his arms open wide and he looked at me with a smile that was overflowing with love. His eyes were filled with longing and desire. He was radiant, just bursting forth with love and more love. He was beckoning me to come running towards him. The minute I started going towards Jesus, He also started coming towards me. I then realised that even while I was running towards Jesus, the Holy Spirit was with me and in me. We were together on this journey making it towards each other, with each other. This is where the idea of pursuit was really birth within me. Our lives are a journey “And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.” (Hebrew 12:1-2) On this journey that we have embarked on we are not alone. The Holy Spirit is with us and in us, Jesus is coming toward us and we are running toward Him and the Father is right there watching with great glee as we pursue Jesus and gain a deeper understanding of His heart too. This whole truth is beautiful but our journey is not in the least bit easy.
We are confronted with obstacles of all kinds. These obstacles could be relational, emotional, financial, practical, the ‘self’ issues. The list can go on and on. It is easy to want to give up, give in and just get frustrated. I know I have. These struggles are real and some are extremely hard. “No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” (1 Corinthians 10:13) This verse has always brought encouragement to me. Let me break it down,
‘No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to man.’ This essentially means that EVERYTHING that we go through is a common struggle. We are not the only ones struggling with it while the rest of the world is living happily. It is such a common lie of the enemy to have us believe that only we struggle with these issues so there must be something very wrong with us. That is NOT true. No matter what your struggle is, no matter how bad you think it is, no matter how serious or terrible you think it is, you are not alone.
The next part of the verse says ‘God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear’. Just think about this, the absolute truth is that God IS faithful. He will never let us down. He will not let us be tempted beyond what we can bear. Yes, we go through some extremely tough and challenging struggles but God would not let us endure it if he didn’t think we can handle it. If your struggle is hard, I mean real hard, it means that God knows you are strong enough to handle it or he wouldn’t have let you endure it. The ultimate beauty of this is that through each struggle, hardship, temptation, issue we face we are merely being refined to grow in God.
Here is the last and best part of this verse ‘but when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it’. So not only can you handle what you are going through but you don’t even have to do it alone. God will provide a way out so that you can endure it. He will provide a way out. The problem is that we try to seek out a solution for ourselves but it says, HE WILL PROVIDE. This means that all we have to do is depend and rely on God as he provides a way out. Often the way out that God provides is very different from what we would want to expect and so we try and fish out other options or solutions. I know I am guilty of doing this on several occasions. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isaiah 55:9) God’s ways and thoughts are higher than ours, and even though we find his way out illogical, impractical and uncomfortable it’s the only way out. When we are out and look back we will be looking back at our struggle or issue as conquerors and victorious people moving one step further in this race that has been marked out for us.
We were created for a love story, God didn’t need us. The Father, Son and Holy Spirit are fully content and love each other completely. God wanted us. He created us to love us and for us to love him. When we sinned, God put into motion this plan so that He could redeem His people that He loves unconditionally. Jesus loves us as much as He loves the Father. “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love” (John 15:9) The Father loves us as much as He loves Jesus “Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me” (John 17:23) I don’t think I will ever be able to fully comprehend this, but it is the most humbling and overwhelming truth. God is pursuing us, a broken, sinful, and fallen people. THIS IS LOVE. All God wants in return is that we love Him with all our mind and strength. “Jesus replied: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” (Matt 22:37) When we love God we will automatically pursue Him. You can’t not pursue someone you love right?
The pursuit of God all comes down to love.
Everyday we are faced with choices, choices that only we can make for ourselves. The key is to make wise choices that will propel us closer towards Jesus, the closer we get to Him the more transformed our life will be. Choices are hard, but hey if we had everything easy it would not be a sacrifice of love right?
Pursue Jesus with all that you have. Fix your eyes on Him. Your life will never be the same.