Two weeks ago, I began blogging about longing for God and shared the five ways Dr. Kellemen wrote about that answers the question, “What do we long for when we long for Father?” (Soul Physicians).
I’ve already written about how enjoying God is a part of longing for God. The other four Dr. Kellemen suggests are: 1. Entrusting ourselves to God; 2. Engage in His good purposes; 3. Emulate Him; 4. Exalt Him.
Those five things are results of longing for God. When we seek after God, when we long for fellowship and intimacy with God, we’re going to enjoy Him because we are concentrating on His wonderful, beautiful, and attractive qualities.
When we seek and long for fellowship with our wonderful Heavenly Father, we will be more empowered to entrust ourselves to His loving care. The more we surrender ourselves to Him, knowing that He wants our good, the more we will long to be in contact with this marvelous God. Just think how He knows everything that is for our benefit. And by the way, what we call “bad” things can be for our benefit. If we don’t believe that, we will be hesitant to entrust ourselves to Him and draw near to Him because we really don’t think He’s a good God. Instead, we can have the perspective of the Psalmist: “It is good for me that I was afflicted, That I may learn Your statues” (119:71 NASB).
The third result of longing for God is wanting to engage in His good purposes. Longing for God and drawing closer to Him will motivate us to fulfill His plans and to walk within His desires for us. Again, the Psalmist writes,
“Trust in the LORD and do good;
Dwell in the land and cultivate faithfulness.
Delight yourself in the LORD;
And He will give you the desires of your heart.
Commit your way to the LORD,
Trust also in Him, and He will do it.” (37:3-5).
The more we long for God, the more we delight in Him. The more we delight in Him, the more our desires are within the realm of His desires for us. We’ll just naturally long for those things in alignment with His plans.
Fourthly, longing for God and drawing closer to Him, will empower us to emulate Him. We will represent Him to others through our godliness. Have you ever noticed that who you think about, you become more like? Even if it’s someone you say that you “hate,” and even though you may be determined not to be like them; you can begin to notice qualities in yourself that are like that person. It’s because you have spent so much time thinking about them. Well, the same principle happens in a positive way. The more we long for God and think about Him, the more we naturally become like Him. And we reflect Him in the way we react and the choices we make.
Finally, longing for God will result in us exalting Him. He will get the glory because of how we enjoy our Father, entrust ourselves to Him, engage in His purposes, and emulate Him. He’ll shine through us and He’ll get the credit. He’ll look good!
As I’ve continued in a month-long fast from sugar as a means of drawing closer to God, I have indeed longed for God more. I think of God more just in everyday kind of things. I turn to Him more often. I look forward to having specific time with Him, concentrating through Bible study and prayer.
Of course, with any spiritual exercise, things wane and then increase. At times, when I want something sweet, I haven’t turned my attention to the Lord. But then I’ll realize my focus has decreased, and I’ll make a fresh commitment. At first, I’m tempted to get discouraged, but I remind myself I’m on a journey and stumbling is to be expected. It’s okay. I’m learning. God is working. The “ing” means progress and growth.
I’m grateful for this time; but I’m sure looking forward to a hot fudge sundae!