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.