Theme of the Week: Transforming Prayer
Bible Verse: “The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; the LORD turn his face toward you and give you peace.” Numbers 6:24-26
Scripture Reading: Psalm 4:1-8
I love [in-person] “face time” – with certain people. When I get face time with my wife, children, family members, and good friends, it is always meaningful and enriching.
Of course, I also dread face time with certain people. Face time can be good or bad, depending on whom we are facing and the nature of the encounter. People far from God avoid face time with the Almighty – at least on this earth. Someday, everyone – the righteous and the unrighteous – will have some personal face time with the risen and reigning Christ.
The idea of God’s face is one of the most powerful, life-changing themes in the Bible. Still, many live their entire lives with minimal emphasis on face time with God. Perhaps they don’t understand the incredible opportunity because they’ve never experienced it. Maybe they don’t feel the need. Maybe prayer time is just too rushed. But face time with God is the refreshment the human soul so desperately needs. And like temperature, pulse, and blood pressure tests we encounter when we visit the doctor, face time tell us how we are really doing.
What is meant by face? It is the representation of the real essence and character of a person. It is the unique identifying characteristic of an individual. It is also the key to really getting to know someone. Just as the eyes are the windows to the soul, so a face is the canvas of the heart and personality.
In the Scriptures, we are encouraged to seek God’s face. Certainly the Bible says that God is Spirit (John 4:24). He is “eternal, immortal, invisible” (1 Timothy 1:17). He dwells in “unapproachable light” (1 Timothy 6:16). Yet the Bible calls us to an intimate encounter and speaks of those who have communed with Almighty God face-to-face.
God’s face refers to His holy, intimate presence manifested to humans on earth. In the ultimate sense, we cannot experience His full, unrestrained presence and live to tell about it. Yet He reveals himself to us to the degree that we have the capacity – because He wants us to know and experience Him, and He created us for this very purpose.
God calls us to an intimate encounter as we pursue Him with all our hearts. In my understanding, to seek His face today means to set our hearts to seek Him in worship with biblical understanding, submitting completely to the control of His Spirit with a longing to know and enjoy Him more. Again, it is not about rehearsing a quick list of needs with God, but seeking Him because of who He is, with a passion for a deeper intimacy and experience of His presence.
Here is the good news. The invitation to seek His face is offered to you, right now. He is saying to us, “Seek My face.” Now we must hear the call – and answer.
Taken from Transforming Prayer: How Everything Changes When You Seek God’s Face by Daniel Henderson. ©2011 by Daniel Henderson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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