When You Seek Me

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for wholeness and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.  Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me and I will hear you.  You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.” (Jer. 29:11-13)

This verse is common as we come into the season of graduations.  It holds a great promise for everyone, but especially those who are just moving into the future — the future that God promises to give them.  However, most graduation cards only include verse eleven… and don’t bother to include the rest.  They stop at “They will call upon me…” and miss the incredible importance of the last two verses.  Verse thirteen is essential to complete this passage, and too often it is left out.  Why?  I believe that unknowingly many people dislike the committment verse thirteen entails:

“You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart 

Seeking and finding are active verbs on the part of the Christian.  Verse eleven, the one common on graduation cards, puts the responsibility completely on God:

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for wholeness and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”

That is a wonderful promise and it comforts me often.  However, there is more to it.  People like to stop there and say, “Well, it’s all in God’s hands; now I just sit back and wait.”  Sure, to some extent.  But God will not be able to work with someone who is unwilling to be worked with.  We must desire His will and way; we must seek it.

“Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me and I will hear you…” (vs.12)

What? Prayer? Yes, it takes effort.  It takes time.  It is what builds a relationship.  All of my friendships are built around communication.  I can tell my friend Jenna almost anything, and she will listen and tell me what she thinks.  I became friends with Kaysie through communicating online.  It took time, but we established a relationship by talking to one another.  Prayer takes time and effort that many people — especially young people — don’t want to give.  See, God will indeed give us a future and a hope, but there are some prerequisites.  It is these that are so often ignored in this passage.  It’s not all on God here — we are responsible too.

So God promises us that His plans are for our good, that He has a “future and a hope” for us — reassuring us that He will be right beside us whenever we need Him.  Then He says that when you allow Him to work, you will come to Him and pray and He will hear you.  There is a relationship — a connection — between God and His child.  Now for the last verse:

“You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.” (vs.13)

This is the verse that no one cares to put in the graduation card.  No one wants to think  about the work involved.  No one thinks to tell the young graduate that a life with God involves sacrifice and effort — which is the best thing they could ever be told.  God has already paid our ransom — He has bridged the gap between God and man.  Now it is up to the Christian to cross the bridge and seek Him… with all her heart.  Then He will be found, and we will indeed have a future and a hope in Him.

 

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One Response

  1. Thanks Phylicia! That is such an awesome promise- that anyone who seeks God wholeheartedly will find him.

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