There is a notion about God which I’ve heard expressed many times, which says, “If God really wants something for me, then He’ll just make it happen.” Occasionally He does just that! Most of the time, however, He looks for us to respond to and engage with Him. God doesn’t want to make you cooperate — He wants to make you want to.
“[Not in your own strength] for it is God Who is all the while effectually at work in you [energizing and creating in you the power and desire], both to will and to work for His good pleasure and satisfaction and delight.” Phi. 2:13 AMP
Isn’t that how it all begins in our journey of life with God? He draws us in and waits for us to respond. He wants us to experience His wholeness through salvation, but He conforms us gradually as we engage His kindness, goodness, and mercy toward us. God wants to be wanted by you, hear and now — in actuality instead of only intellectually.
It is our response of surrender that breaks our blindness.
It is our whole-hearted pursuit that allows us to find and encounter God.
It is our intentional cooperation that gets what God wants for us.
“You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.” Jer. 29:13 ESV
You may wonder why it seems to be so difficult to find God if He really does want you to find Him. You may ask, “Why won’t He just find me?” The truth is, He already sees you and knows you. He’s closer than you imagine. Though you won’t understand it immediately, the only true difficulty is in your surrender.
He surrounds us (Psa. 125:2), and He said He would never leave or forsake us (Heb. 13:5). Jesus said, “I am with you always!” (Mat. 28:20) We may not always sense or perceive His nearness, but He is there nonetheless.
He loves to pursue and to be pursued. Why would experiencing His tangible presence result from doing things differently than we did to experience the entry stage of our salvation? It’s always by God’s grace through our intentional action of faith. God wants us to deliberately and willfully respond to Him. Doing so always entices Him to draw you in deeper and deeper, until you feel Him pouring out His affections for you.
“Or do you suppose it is to no purpose that the Scripture says, “He yearns jealously over the spirit that he has made to dwell in us”? 6 But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “ God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” 7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8 Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.” Jam. 4:5-8 ESV
Jeremy Caris is the founder and president of Caris Ministries. Since he is called as a prophet and gifted as a teacher, much of his focus involves equipping believers to hear, know, and follow God in their own daily experience. He teaches the foundational truth of the Word with simple clarity, while revealing deep things of the spirit in practical ways. He has the unique ability to demystify the supernatural side of real relationship with a living God and make it an embraceable and accessible reality for all believers. Jeremy has been married to his best friend, Mandy Caris, for eighteen years, and is the proud father of two boys.