Daily Success
Institute in Basic Life Principles

Command 17 : Ask, Seek, and Knock | Day 117

Seek the Best First!

A philosopher once observed that there are two great tragedies in life. The first tragedy is not getting the desires of our heart. The second tragedy is getting them! The problem is that we think we know what we want, but when we finally get it, it is not what we thought it was going to be. We are disappointed and become disillusioned.

For this reason we must first seek the face of the Giver before seeking His gifts. There is a built-in reward for all who do this. A 16-year-old King of Israel discovered that “as long as he sought the LORD, God made him to prosper” (II Chronicles 26:5). Notice that God does not say that He will bless our labor for Him, but He will bless our seeking of Him. In fact, He reproved the church at Ephesus for losing their first love for Him, even though they were busy doing good works. (See Revelation 2:5.)

God wants us to seek His face rather than His hand.

One of the practical reasons for seeking the Lord is so that He will give us the right desires. Then we will want the right things. “Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart” (Psalm 37:4).

The most important reason, however, is that God created us to have fellowship with Him. All of the circumstances in life are designed to promote and strengthen this fellowship. David understood this when he wrote, “One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to inquire in his temple" (Psalm 27:4). Then David gives a powerful personal testimony in Psalm 105:4 and Psalm 34:10:

“Seek the LORD, and his strength: seek his face evermore." "They that seek the LORD shall not want any good thing."

As a teenager, I would read these verses and want to apply them, but I wondered how to do it. Then one day I discovered the words of Psalm 63:1-6, “O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee ... . My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness; and my mouth shall praise thee with joyful lips: When I remember thee upon my bed, and meditate on thee in the night watches.”

I began to go to sleep meditating on a passage of newly memorized Scripture. I would share it with the Lord over and over, each time emphasizing a different word and trying to picture its application in my life. God began to prosper my life with all the good things that He knew would bring success. Because there is nothing more important in life or foundational to daily success, I am praying that nothing will hinder you from seeking the Lord's face!

“Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you …” (Matthew 7:7–8).

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Contributing writer: Bill Gothard