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The Importance of Seeking the Face of God

The Importance of Seeking God's Face

Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always. – 1 Chronicles 16:11 & Psalm 105:4

I was teaching on the 7 tips to developing a prayer habit this Sunday. As I was going over the 3rd tip about God’s face, I realized that I don’t think many people understand the importance of this step. Prayer is too often viewed as talking to an invisible God that the idea of seeing His face is thought of impossible.

My heart says of you, “Seek his face!” Your face, Lord, I will seek. – Psalm 27:8

We read the Psalms and create worship songs about seeking the face of God. In seeking revival we are to humble ourselves and seek His face (2 Chronicles 7:14). What does this mean? Why is it important? How do we seek the face of God?

What Does It Mean to See the Face of God?

Since then, no prophet has risen in Israel like Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face, – Deuteronomy 34:10

The Bible gives this great example in Moses. He would spend time with God speaking to Him as one would with another person. He would come out of these times with God with the glory of God on Him so much that His face shone. Looking on the face of God opens us up to receive more of who He is and to understand more of His intent.

How many of you have been misunderstood through email or a Facebook post. It may have been a joke that your reader didn’t pick up on. It may have been worded completely right but was interpreted differently due to how the reader was feeling at the time. There is something about being face to face that removes misinterpretations. The same is true with God.

As you look into His face He may tell you to be holy, but all of a sudden you no longer see it as a rebuke or an unreachable goal. You can see the tenderness in His eyes. Now there is nothing else in the entire world you would rather do. And, you believe it is possible.

Now if the ministry that brought death, which was engraved in letters on stone, came with glory, so that the Israelites could not look steadily at the face of Moses because of its glory, transitory though it was, will not the ministry of the Spirit be even more glorious? – 2 Corinthians 3: 7-8

Just think, the experience of Moses is not the high mark of the Christian faith, but instead it is the baseline of what we are expected to experience. We can boldly enter the throne room of God (Hebrews 4:16). We can fix our eyes on Jesus. (Hebrews 12:1-2). Seeing the face of God is an experience available to every believer.

What is the Importance of Seeking the Face of God?

When a king’s face brightens, it means life; his favor is like a rain cloud in spring. – Proverbs 16:15

For all our Bible reading and Sunday morning sermons, Christians still generally have a misunderstanding of who God is. It is typical for believers to think God is disappointed with them. We are so focused on our sins and mistakes that we feel that God is shaking His head at us. This affects our approach to Him. We bow our heads, we grovel at His feet, and we tell Him how unworthy we are. We come to God like the prodigal son with our, “I’m so sorry” speech, but we never look up to His face to see Him put on us His robe and ring.

We feel like Job when he asked God why do you hide your face from me (Job 13:24)? But like Job, God is not hiding his face. We can’t see past our circumstances to realize that God is still there. He still loves us.

“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

This blessing in Numbers has been spoken in the church throughout the ages as a declaration over the people. The power in this blessing is that it is in the heart of God to bless us and be gracious towards us. When we seek His face, His face lights up because we are His dearly loved children (Romans 8:14-17).

And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit. – 2 Corinthians 3:18

Looking on the face of God transforms us into His image. We become like the things we focus on. When we spend our time in fear or worry, our lives are filled with hardships. When we focus on money, we become greedy. When we focus on our needs, we become desperate in filling them. When we focus on the things done wrong against us, we become bitter and angry. It is only in God that when we focus on Him that all the good things are added (Matthew 6:33).

How Do We Seek the Face of God?

I have sought your face with all my heart; be gracious to me according to your promise. – Psalm 119:58

As we draw near to God, He will draw near to us (James 4:8). God wants to be sought out, but He is also eager to reveal Himself to those who love Him. As we cultivate and honor this relationship, seeking the face of God becomes easier and easier.

For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ. – 2 Corinthians 4:6

God says that He has placed this light in our hearts to display the face of Christ. To seek the face of God, we need to dive into our hearts and find Christ there. As we think about whatever is trustworthy, good, noble, and praiseworthy, our minds are drawn into God’s presence (Philippians 4:8). Dwell on things above (Colossians 3:1-2). Let you mind meditate on heavenly things. Also ask the Holy Spirit to help lead you into His presence. He is eager to help lead us to more of Christ.

As for me, I will be vindicated and will see your face; when I awake, I will be satisfied with seeing your likeness. – Psalm 17:15

Look full into the His wonderful face. There is perspective for you in the looking. The things of this world do grow strangely dim. It’s not just a song; it’s an experience available to each of us. God is in complete control of this world, and looking at His face gives peace and security to our lives. There is healing for you in the looking. He cannot hide His love for you when you look at Him. His loves overflows into His expressions. Feelings of unworthiness and shame are washed away when you see His loving eyes for you.

The Bible is full of exhortations for us to be seeking the face of God. God loves to spend the time with us, and we need the time with Him. Misconceptions and faulty thinking are realigned in the power of His face. A Christian is never distant from joy in their lives when they have spent regular time looking at God’s face. Take time now and seek His face.

Leave a comment below of your experiences with God’s face. Allow it to help encourage others in their journey.

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72 Responses to “The Importance of Seeking the Face of God”

  1. Bill Britton says:

    Thank you for this. I’m doing to save it to review, study and meditate upon. Truly important and encouraging instruction. Thanks for your ministry.

  2. Bill Britton says:

    I did actually find something just now in Theology of the O.T. by Edmond Jacob, pp. 77ff on “the face of God.” Very interesting and helpful. Funny too, as opposed to the more conservative “A Biblical Theology of the Old Testament” by Roy Zuck, which has nothing in the index for “face of God” or even “presence of God.”! Unfortunately, in this case you need the actual book – too old to be online. Definitely worth tracking it down though. If you want, send me an email address and I’ll scan and send you a copy.

  3. Sarah says:

    Thanks for this; I had read the jan 19 entry in “Jesus Calling” by Sarah Young, which invites us to seek God’s face to recurve his peace. It hit me that I didn’t really know what that meant. And why does God ask us to look for his face as opposed to his heart or some other feature? curious, I googled “seek God’s face” and found your very helpful post. Your thoughts aligned very well with the entry in Young’s book. I also found reading psalm 27:8 in the NLT version provided a clearer understanding of God’s calling about coming into his presence: “My heart has heard you say ” come and talk with me.” And my heart responds, ” Lord I am coming.””

    • Dear Sarah,
      Thank you for sharing. While I haven’t read “Jesus Calling,” my sister-in-law and a few other of my friends really love it and are getting a lot out of it. I’m glad you found my post helpful. May your continual response to Jesus initiation lead you to more and more encounters with His loving face.
      Blessings,
      Kevin

    • Faith says:

      Dear Sarah,

      Your e-mail made me smile. I too, was just reading Jesus Calling – but I was reading February 5th where she, again, references where God encourages us to seek His Face. Like you, it hit me when I read that (today) that I really did not know what seeking His Face meant. I googled it and God led me to Kevin’s entry also 🙂

      Kevin,

      Thank you so much for sharing your insight! I do feel enlightened a bit, but I’ve read through it only once. I am printing this out to read over and meditate on and let God work on my thorough understanding so I can put seeking His Face into daily practice.

      I will also make copies and share this with my church community group!

      In Christ,

      Faith <

  4. jeanne saul says:

    I too had googled “Seek God’s face” and found this article. I highlighted and posted a section to my facebook and right under my post was this from a friend. It is a bride singing to her husband as she walks down the isle. I instantly saw me singing to my groom (Jesus) and was so blessed. Its on godtube, heres the link: http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=WYZZPPNX

  5. heather says:

    This website just showed me to achieve my dreams. this is very helpful

  6. Dominic says:

    wow….thank u Lord….We become what we focus on INDEED…Amen

  7. Thomas Warren says:

    I like the article. We are not instructed to do too many things “always”. Prayer is one of them (Lk 21:36; 1 Thes 5:17; Lk 18:1; Eph 6:17-18; Job 27:10; Acts 10:1-2; Ro 12:12 (ESV)); Giving thanks to God for all things is another (Eph 5:20; Col 3:17; Heb 13:15); Fearing God is another (Mt 10:28; Ro 3:18; 1 Pet 2:17; Deut 14:23; Pv 28:14; Deut 6:13; Deut 10:12; Ps 36:1; Ecc 12:13; Lk 12:5); and Praying for God’s attention/presence in our lives (His face) is another (Ps 105:4; 1 Chr 16:11; 2Chr 7:14; Ps 27:8).

    You’ve got one problem in your post though: Replacing Sunday with the actual sabbath (Friday sundown to Saturday sundown). You, like most Christians, have been fooled by Satan (who has deceived the *whole* world: Rev 12:9 <– That means you, me, and everyone). If you ask a Christian what biblical reference they use to justify a sunday sabbath (moving it to the 1st day of the week instead of the 7th day of the week), the number 1 response is Acts 20:7 and 1 Cor 16:1-2. However if you look at the Greek for those two verses it does NOT say "first day of the week". It says "one" and "sabbath"… as in "on one of the sabbaths". This is the direct opposite of what satan has plotted though and what has been going down in the bible colleges (this is all satan's work just like living lawlessly [aka picking what instructions to believe and not believe from the bible]). You will also find if you examine the other arguments closely for a sunday sabbath that they do not match up either.

    If you start observing the actual sabbath, then the Lord will more fully hear your prayers and bless you.

    Blessings,

    Tommy

    • Dear Tommy,
      I completely agree the move to Sunday for Sabbath is not necessarily Biblical, but I disagree with it being from Satan. It is an interesting theory though. Thank you for sharing.
      Blessings,
      Kevin

      • Michael G Murphy says:

        I find it most interesting that you agree with the writer who said you were not celebrating the true sabbath, but not that it was the devil who was responsible for this. How can that be? If it’s not according to Scripture than who does that leave? You probably have convinced yourself that it was a mistake or failure of people. But I would argue that it’s the devil who causes us to misread the Word of God even as He deceived Eve in the Garden. By refusing to accept the truth and it leading to Godly sorrow and repentance you simply give mental acceptance and do on your way. Please explain how this is correct in the sight of God?

        • Dear Michael,
          When I said the move from Saturday to Sunday was not Biblical, I was merely agreeing that the Bible never said we were to change it. However, I feel Sabbath was created for man not the other way around. Therefore we were given Sabbath that we may rest and renew our dependance on God. I’m not saying the exact day of the week we do this is important or not. There are much more important commands we need to get right, like loving God and loving others, before we start telling other believers that they are following the devil because we have our Sabbath on the wrong day.

          To your other point, yes I agree that the devil is the father of lies, and I agree that all of us believe in some of his lies more than we would care to admit.

          Thanks,
          Kevin

          • Patricia Curry says:

            I agree with you. We major too much in minors when God desires our whole hearts, regardless of the day. He will get everything straight in us as we continue to seek and follow Him. Our world is in turmoil; many have never experienced the love Jesus has told us to share with His creation. We have much to do besides quibble.

          • Thank you for your comment. It’s always good to seek Him more. 🙂

  8. Monica says:

    I must thank you so much for this life changing and wonderful teaching,i believe this is going to completely change my life as i seek his .In faith i know that soon ,i will be a better person before the lord.God bless you for your wonderful works.

  9. ashley says:

    i also typed in google Gods Face and was brought to this article 🙂
    thank you 🙂
    -seeking

  10. Shari says:

    Hi Kevin,

    I also, Googled “Seeking God’s Face” because I did not know what that meant. Although your post gave me more direction than I previously had, I still do not knwo what that means. I guess, I am saying that I don’t know what action that is specifically. Is it praying, reading, ect.? Literally, what action is it? I am praying to God about something specific that requires HIm to give me a “yes” or “no” answer about something I am asking for. I can’t tell if he’s answered already with a “No” or a “Wait”. I don’t have what I want, so he clearly didn’t say “yes”. I thought that every time I prayed and sought out to understand his word that I was seeking his face. But now Im simply confused. Any help?

    • Dear Shari,
      Thank you for your comment. Seeking God’s face is an abstract within the Christian community because I find it is only referenced, but not actually described. I don’t think you are alone in your confusion. I will say it is praying, but different than how most people pray. Most people pray through a list, but seeking God’s face is looking to spend time with Him which you may or may not get to the things you originally wanted to talk about. God because more of your focus than the prayer requests. God wants a relationship with you and seeking His face is an important step to this process. I think for you as you get started on this process, think about the attributes of God. Think about His love, His mercy, His goodness towards you. Thank Him for these things as if He is in the room with you… because He is. Over time this will get easier and easier. I hope this helps you.
      Blessings,
      Kevin

      • Diane Fisher says:

        Thanks for your post. I originally was searching for help with fasting and prayer. The fasting mentioned praying , seeking God’s face.

      • Diane Fisher says:

        Me again, John Piper states to seek God’s face ….hebrew (seek) means presence. I have not checked my concordance. God Bless and may each of you seek His face.

  11. osakpolor osarenotor says:

    What a revealing Article I benefited greatly from the article I believe it was God direction that I read this because I have been on a journey on how to hear from God and it lead me to this,I want to know if u have any opinion on hearing God clearly not the small still voice we usually talk about, may God grant you more inspiration to continue the good work

  12. Ssebabenga Joel says:

    No seeks the lord and put to shame. We need faith, faith moves mountains in our lives. Amen

  13. Alan dra says:

    Trying to stop running from the calling that is on my life

  14. Okeke Chimaobi says:

    Thanks,l am blessed from your article.

  15. Pastor Joshua Francis says:

    Am a pastor in Ghana West Africa. I believe this article is full of heavenly wisdom. When John met with God Rev 1:17 And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead. But He laid His right hand on me, saying to me, “Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last.

    This is awesome. God bless us all as we seek his face.

  16. Machelle Kendrick says:

    Does seeking God’s face mean to first imagine what it looks like? Do you begin by seeing His eyes and then smile and Get a chuckle because He has your Uncle’s nose? Or is it just light that you see? Or perhaps the image of Jesus that you remember from your Sunday School classroom? How do we read expressions and see the love in a face that we have never seen? Clearly, I get stuck right here.

    • Dear Machelle,
      The point is not what He looks like but that we are looking. I can’t say I have seen a detailed image of the Father; I just kind of know He is there. It’s kind of strange because even thought I can’t make out details of His face, I can tell whether He is smiling, laughing, looking at something else, etc. My wife on the other hand knows what His beard is like. Jesus, on the other hand, I can see.

      I don’t believe that God grades us on how well we see Him or even how well we hear Him. Our responsibility is to draw near to Him. If we seek Him, we find Him. If you believe that God desires you to seek His face, then tell Him you are willing and ask for His help in the process. Don’t judge whether you are doing it right or not. Trust Him to protect you in the process.

      I this helps you. Thanks for the question.
      Kevin

  17. Ashley says:

    Such a Great Word!! God Bless

  18. MW says:

    Thank you for this wonderful confirmation! I believe God led me here despite the fact that this has been a very trying period in my life. I’m learning to seek his face instead of focusing on the chaos around me and through faith I am believing that seeking him will bring me a peace that is beyond understanding.

  19. Esayas Woldeab says:

    Seek the face of Almighty God is the most interesting than any thing in the world God is near he want to make fellowship with us to share his heart his plan and his thought , When we seek him with all our mind spirit and soul then we will see him

  20. Akinniyi Ololade says:

    Hi,
    I am happy to be a part of this discussion. I ll share my heart with you like this; seeking God’s face starts with getting to acknowledge that God is love, supreme, omnipresent and everything you ever desire (not ur personal or material request), then, acknowledging that u are a sinner and that you are sorry and ready to change, then genuine hrt brokenness and repentance. God only searches ppl’s heart to see their true intents. If he finds you faithful he will definitely appear to u either through the scripture or sermons ur devotionals or dream or prophecy etc.
    you must know what God’s word says, because every situations u pass through already have a statement written or said by God in the bible abt it. Knowing His word gives u the courage to ask or speak to him with faith. Then you must BELIEVE that he is faithful and has some the best he has in mind for you already.
    see all you need is Matthew 6:33; and trusting in Him with all ur hrt prov 3:5. I believe that if u ain’t too patient you can’t wait on Him.
    God is love and will never forsake whoever comes to him.
    Yes it may seem unreal at first, but u get to feel better when u develop delight in his name and word. when u feel sad or uneasy and ur mind says read His words or pray, and if you feel happy in your hrt afterwards, then you should be sure that His love is in your hrt. then you need to remember what Jesus says; all you need to do is to ask for whatsoever in Jesus’ Name: don’t be to anxious to receive. a Bible passage that says we don’t receive because we ask amiss is true. but then God knows the best for us and has done it already needing u to stay in his will and receive it colosians 1:12.
    hearing God’s voice to me starts from the ability to discern and obey the faithful conscience in you that warns u or make you think you are about to do evil. I have disobeyed this many times may God have mercy on me. if you are able to hear and heed this conscience’ warnings then it will be easier for you to hear His Majesty’s voice audibly in your ears (clearly and sound).
    keep in mind that you can only live by faith and Believe to be able to seek his face.

  21. Esta says:

    Dear Kevin,
    Thank you so much for your article. I came across it when I googled “how to seek Gods presence”. It’s been a difficult time after an emergency operation & I feel I lost the “character of God & his goodness”. So it feels like I’m re- learning him a fresh & getting back to the strong desire I had before in seeking him. (I was quite a new Christian to start with).
    It feels like walking again, I don’t know why I’ve forgotten how to do a lot of things, like being in his presence so this was a particularly good article.
    I like that you also explain “how” to do this & also when you said we sometimes imagine God is shaking his head disappointed in us that certainly struck a God.
    I won’t ramble on too much but thank you & if you have a moment I would love if you remembered me in prayer to continue on this path where I can be re-United with my father.
    Oh & if you have any article recommendations too.
    Thanks!
    Esta

  22. Lynn says:

    wish you could see the joy in my heart & smile on my face as i finished going over your article. I take it the holy spirit directed me to this one when i typed “seeking God’s face”

    My spirit has been revived & now going back to the heart of worship. Now i have realised he is a God who can be found, a God who can be known & above all a God who wants to be close to us that’s why he is called Immanuel.

    May God of grace continue using you so mightily. I have been blessed by your article.

  23. Don Bixby says:

    Kevin,

    Thanks! I just ran across this. Wonder what you think of these thoughts: When we look at another person’s face, we can just see the face and that is a purely physical thing — light bouncing over the mass of their features and into our eyes which pick up those images and register in our brain, “Oh, that’s Dan” or “Hmmm, I don’t know her.” But we all know there is something much deeper and magical (spiritual, to be specific, I think) when we actually look into their eyes. To me, when we look into their eyes, there is some kind of spiritual connection which occurs that, in a sense, has nothing to do with the physical. In other words, I would suggest that “connection” is itself completely spiritual. “Seeing” their face is something completely different if we look into their eyes or just observe their features. What I believe I have found is that I do experience that same spiritual connection with God, that same sense that I am looking into His eyes. Of course I can’t physically observe anything. I don’t “see” Him, but then again I do. I feel that same “connection” occur when I “look into His eyes.” It is (to me) clearly something I must choose and something wonderful because those eyes are always full of so much love and kindness. Just wondering if this is what you find too? (Of course it’s possible I’m completely nuts!). I’ve never heard anyone else talk about anything like this, but then again, I’ve never heard anyone even address the subject of seeking His face, like you have. Any thoughts?

    • Dear Don,
      I think you have explained it well. I lived in the Middle East for a year with the regular sound of the call to prayer. It was definitely not a Christian place. The one comment my wife and I received more than anything else was that there was light in our eyes.

      We have a friend who is an optometrist, and he told us how whatever is wrong with you turns up in the eyes somehow. There are some cultures that cannot look into another person’s eyes because it exposes too much of them.

      Your attempts of explaining how you see God’s eyes are good. There is a sense of knowing involved that relates more to our eyes of faith then what we physically see. Thank you for your comments and may you become more aware of His eyes in all that you do.

      Blessings,
      Kevin

  24. Don Bixby says:

    Blessings to you, Kevin. He is so awesome.

  25. Jesse says:

    This was a blessing.

  26. Solly says:

    I’m totally pleased by your teachings on Seeking the face of God.I now understand it better than before.Because God has spoken with me several times but failed or delayed to take action,especially in preaching His Good News to the nations.
    The best thing to do now,guess,is to be in fasted prayer seeking His face. So that i may pick up where i was deviated.

    Thank you

    Regards
    Solly

  27. onnu says:

    Thank you for this article posted, I use to think only reading bible is enough, I had stopped talking to God and have sme prbs now but after reading your message I realized I dint speak to him like I do with friends Thank you for ur post it has really helped me.

    • Dear Onnu,

      I appreciate your encouragement. The Bible is great and a wonderful source to hear God’s voice. I pray that God will reveal to you the many other ways He wants to communicate with you. You are made for connection with Him.

      Blessings,
      Kevin

  28. Adegbenro kayode says:

    I am really blessed by your teaching.I now know where i got it wrong.Seeking the face of God should he a daily program for all Christian.
    Thanks

  29. Cynthia Mayor says:

    I believe that there is no detailed description. Of Jesus features In The Bibile so that we will see His Love and who He is in all His wonderful Glory.

    I read that seeking His face is to seek His desires and those desires to become mine.

    I was led to this site because I googled how to seek Gods face, as I felt the Lord saying to me 3. Times today ‘Seek my face’. I thought initially he meant to read the word, pray and praise more than I already am doing.

    • Cynthia,
      It’s great that God is drawing you in for more. Whatever He wants you to experience by asking you to seek His face, I hope you find it in the complete fullness God has for you.
      Blessings,
      Kevin

  30. Ashley says:

    This article really helped me understand seeking God’s face. It reminds me of a book called “Face to Face Appearances from Jesus” I read by David E. Taylor. Very inspiring

  31. Thobile says:

    Hi I would also like to get a copy of this book too

  32. Silindile says:

    Thank you for this awesome insight.

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