You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:13
"God Goes Online," read the title of an article carried in the newspaper,The Wall Street Journal, nearly two decades ago. Yes, a quick search for “God” in a web browser instantaneously brings up about 2.9 billion results!
But, can you really find God on the Internet? It’s true that there is a growing body of helpful, enriching spiritual resource material online in a world of languages, but I'm not sure that if you are serious in your search to discover God, that the Internet is the place to start.
Where do you find God? Some search for Him in nature, but that's like studying the footprints of someone who walked in the snow or sand. You become certain that He was there, but the tracks are cold, and you want to meet a live person. Others look within themselves, thinking that in solitude or meditation, they will discover His presence within. And while He should be able to be found in the life of a believer, it's true that often the still voice of God is drowned out by the noise and busyness of our lives; but there is a better way.
"You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart" was the promise that God gave through Jeremiah a long time ago (Jeremiah 29:12). But where is the best place to start if you are serious about knowing God?
Step #1: Go to the record. Read what God has revealed about Himself, not just what others have written about Him. I'm talking about source materials which you will find only in the Bible, God's Word. The Bible isn’t an optional accessory to the Christian life, although the statistics show that only 19% of church-going Christians read the Bible daily and 40% read it “once a month, rarely, or never,” according to research by the Center for Bible Engagement.
You simply won’t come to know God without reading his letter to you! You can begin with the Gospel of John, which records 21 days in the life of Jesus Christ--the central figure of this book which reveals who God is, the relationship He wants with us, and how we find forgiveness and purpose for our lives.
A note here: Many people major on secondary sources--Christian books, the Internet, devotionals or sermons they hear in church, and there's nothing wrong with this; but secondary sources are valid only if they are based solely on the actual the source.
Step #2: Converse with God through prayer which is conversation. At the beginning of your search, say something like, "God, I want You to reveal Yourself to me and open my eyes so that I may see You. Open my ears so that I may hear Your voice--not the voice of someone else telling me who You are." Step #3: Get acquainted with those who really know God. Godly men and women who have walked with God for years can enrich your life through their personal experiences. Talk with them, spend time with them, get them to tell you how their search for God ended when they surrendered in repentance and in faith embraced Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. They can give you examples of what the God of the Bible is really like, the God who is, as theologian-philosopher, Francis Schaeffer, termed it, both “infinite and personal.”
A closing thought: God wants a relationship with you far more than you want a relationship with Him, and He proved that by sending His Son to introduce us to the Father. God's promise is still true. Remember He said, "And you will seek me and find me, when you search for me with all your heart" (Jeremiah 29:13, KJV).
Resource reading: Jeremiah 29:11-14.