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Finding God in 40 days

My family has easily been entertained at times, searching for and finding Waldo.  You are probably familiar with these fun, but peculiar books, with an assortment of wacky and whimsical pictures and Waldo somewhere hidden within.  I often picked up one of these books, in years past, to help the kids (and me) endure long plane flights overseas. We would look, search–often fooled by a man or another distraction oddly disguised in red and white, instead of Waldo. Where is Waldo? The search takes patience and tenacity– looking and scanning for Waldo, but is also fun in the process. However, once we find him, well… it is on to the next scene!

Sometimes, I have treated God a little like Waldo –something I have to search for to find.  He seems so easily hidden and difficult to locate at times. Often the busyness of life distracts and covers Him, making God difficult to see. The volume of life is turned up so high that I can’t hear Him.  I also find my feet don’t naturally want to run to Him, but to lesser things– yet I do want to find Him each day. What I am discovering is that even when God doesn’t “feel” present, some intentionality helps my eyes to see, trains my ears to hear, my feet to run to Him and with Him, and my heart to rest in Him.

What if I found Him?

If I did search for God and found Him, what would I find? If I listened for God and heard His voice, what would it say? If I looked for God and I saw Him, what would I see? If my feet ran to Him, where would we go? If I found His arms, how would He receive me and how would I feel?

Finding God during Lent

The forty days of lent, the time before Easter, are soon upon us. What better way to spend time each day, then finding God each day? One way of helping train our eyes, ears, heart and feet is by lingering with God in the Psalms.

Something like this has helped me in the past:
Each day read a Psalm from the bible.  As you read that Psalm, notice one attribute or quality of God from that day which stands out to you.  Keep a journal and write down that attribute or quality. Things to ask:

  • Why does this quality of God stick out to me?
  • If this is true about God… then what?
  • Can I remember or find another place in the scriptures, which mention or demonstrate this quality?
  • Linger in thought over this word and the impact it has on your life and world.

Preparing hearts

This is a great way to prepare my heart for Easter. As I see how big God is, I become smaller. To find God is to find the eternal God. But, it is also to find something very personal. He loves me and is full of compassion towards me– one who, not only wants my best, but is actually with me. Next to Him and under His wing, I find the safety and protection I need. Also, as I find God, I  see my sin and my need for Him, and I rediscover His love more closely.  His grace, mercy and forgiveness become more tangible, for He cancels my doubt, shame and guilt.   Ultimately, to find God places my heart at rest in Him. To find God and think of Him, changes me.

Where to start

Start next Wednesday in Psalm 103 (this is a great Psalm of seeing what Gods is like); then go through a Psalm each day. Really, you can start anywhere. After Psalm 103, I will read Psalm 8 on Thursday, for it begins with the majesty of God.  Then I will read Psalm 9 and so forth.

This is a valuable way to prepare our hearts for Easter by finding God each of these 40 days.  By Easter, you will have a collection of attributes and qualities of God.  As we “see” God, our eyes become more open to Him.  Our ears begin to hear him throughout our day and in the voices of others and in His word. Our heart grows in love. Our feet take movement. Soon He is not so difficult to find. We begin to find Him in the ordinary parts and places of our day–even in the mundane. Join with me in finding God in the Psalms. Give it a try! I would love to hear what you discover as well!