Soul Search

By   •   February 10, 2009

In one place within the highlands of Scotland, a few rivers empty into one vast, freshwater lake. Sheep graze on the green hillsides nearby, and fog flows between the ridges. Wind whips across the gray-blue water of the lake.

This body of water is called Loch Ness, a Gaelic name, and it is the site of an ancient mystery. For more than 40 years, one man named *Tom has been pursuing that mystery, searching the lake for the infamous Loch Ness Monster.

Tom says that he saw the creature once. He has this memory. He was on a boat, and a large animal came close to the boat, its skin peeking out of the dark water. Its hide was like an elephant’s skin, he says.

After witnessing a glimpse of this animal, Tom spent days searching with boat crews for evidence. Over the years he has employed sonar navigation, complex cameras, powerful lights, robotic arms, and more special equipment to continue the search. He has even patented some of his own technology.

“In my heart,” says Tom, “I believe it’s there.”

Operating on a bit of evidence, a memory, Tom continues to drop his ropes into the water, 300 feet down, every day. His mission has become a wholehearted quest. Today he continues to scour the lake for the remains of a monster.

Have you ever searched like that for something?

THE ART OF THE QUEST

Tom’s relentlessness, no matter how compelling, doesn’t prove the existence of the Loch Ness Monster. It only proves that Tom is a great seeker.

In a world of ready-made meals, tanning beds, thousands of TV channels, and that sea of immediate information–the Internet–lots of people don’t have to search very long for what they want.

A Google search takes less than one second and can produce millions of results. Commercials for PDA (Personal Digital Assistant) devices assure us everything is right here at our fingertips.

We don’t have to wonder anymore. After all, it’s easier to rely on the fastest, most accessible answers. But in the scurry to keep up with the increasing pace of life, it seems that the art of the quest has been lost.

SEARCHING FOR THE SPIRITUAL

While Tom may never find the fabled Loch Ness monster that has eluded seekers for more than 1,000 years, another ancient pursuit exists–one that promises to reveal its life and truth. This great journey is the pursuit of the mystery of God.

As an apostle of Jesus Christ, Paul claimed that his purpose was to motivate people to desire God, seek after Him, and find His mystery revealed in Jesus Christ.

Paul writes, in the book of Colossians, “My purpose is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (2:2-3).

Jesus Christ revealed Himself as the Son of God, the Messiah. He came to live a life holy in the eyes of God–something no one has ever done before, and He came to offer Himself as an atoning sacrifice for the sins of the world so that all who place their faith in Him will be able to know God.

Jesus invites people to look for God’s wisdom. He taught people to pray to God, speak to Him, and ask for what they need. He encouraged healthy curiosity.

Jesus said, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened” (Matthew 7:7-8).

A DIFFERENT KIND OF TREASURE

During Jesus’ lifetime, He said that He came to be a seeker Himself–one who looks for those who are off course in their lives. Christ said, “The Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost” (Luke 19:9).

For those who seek after some sort of thing, it is a one-sided search. With a treasure hunt, it’s just that: a hunt. With a monster hunt, it can become a search with no end in sight.

But when you’re searching for God, the odds of finding Him are good–because what you’re seeking is also looking for you.

Are you feeling lost? Have you lost your way in your search for meaning in life? Open yourself up to God. He is knocking on the door of your heart.

Jesus says, “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with Me” (Revelation 3:20).

Throughout Scripture, God promises over and over that a search for Him will be worth it: “‘You will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart. I will be found by you,’ declares the Lord” (Jeremiah 29:13-14).

During Jesus’ ministry on earth, He knew the Hebrew Scriptures (the Old Testament) well and often quoted from the book of Deuteronomy. One passage in Deuteronomy says, “Seek the Lord your God. You will find Him if you look for Him with all your heart and with all your soul” (4:29).

And even after people have found God–or been found by God–His gift of the Holy Spirit prods their hearts, urging and encouraging them to walk closer with Christ, become more like Christ, and minister to others with the love of Christ.

God’s Holy Spirit provokes self-examination, repentance, confession, and growth. The search to follow after Jesus becomes a lifelong journey and challenge. However, Christ followers have the promise of a Guide and Counselor along the path.

The Bible says, “Let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice. Look to the Lord and His strength; seek His face always” (1 Chronicles 16:10-11).

Becoming a good explorer is worth the time and energy, worth your heart and soul, because following Jesus Christ is a quest where seekers grow continually in the knowledge and wisdom of God.


MORE …
Do you want to learn more about Jesus? Visit billygraham.org/Jesus »

Do you want to know more about what it means to become a Christian? Because Christ died, your sins can be forgiven, and because He conquered death you can have eternal life. Learn more »

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How to Seek God’s Guidance »
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