“And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6)
I know some of you have been following the playoff exploits of the Toronto Raptors, and I suspect most of the rest of you are aware that they won the NBA championship last night. Their star player, is an interesting young man, especially for a professional athlete in today’s world. He is soft-spoken and intensely private. He avoids social media like I avoid Hallmark Christmas movies, preferring to let his game speak for itself. When he does face the required post game interviews they are more endured than embraced. His skill, poise, effort, and accomplishments speak volumes about him as a player, but his personal reticence leaves fans saying, “but I don’t know him”. Can we get behind the stat sheets to see what he is like as a person? So articles such as “Who is Kawhi Leonard?” are written in attempt to ‘fill in the blanks’.
Have you ever challenged yourself to know God? I don’t mean to simply know facts and characteristics about God, but to know him personally, intimately, and experientially. As we continue on our summer book recommendation theme I wish to commend the following 20th century classic: A.W. Tozer’s The Pursuit of God. Tozer’s primary concern is that following God’s saving pursuit of us, we ought to passionately pursue Him. He argues that many Christians know about God, even come to a “right” understanding of God, and yet have little experience of Him in their daily lives. Tozer writes:
To most people God is an inference, not a reality. He is a deduction from evidence which they consider adequate, but He remains personally unknown to the individual.
There is a temptation, perhaps especially amongst evangelicals, to content ourselves with an intellectual knowledge of God – to think rightly about Him, without allowing him to actually empower, enlighten, renew, and lovingly rule our lives.
One of my favourite chapters is named, “The Sacrament of Living”, which encourages us to do “all to the glory of God”, and not just those activities that seem more spiritual, but indeed all of our everyday life. He writes,
The “layman” need never think of his humbler task as being inferior to that of his minister. Let every man abide in the calling wherein he is called and his work will be as sacred as the work of the ministry. It is not what a man does that determines whether his work is sacred or secular, it is why he does it. … Let a man sanctify the Lord God in his heart and he can thereafter do no common act. All he does is good and acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. For such a man, living itself will be sacramental and the whole world a sanctuary.” (p. 127).
The Pursuit of God is a short (136 pages) easy reading book. Tozer’s love of God is evident throughout and he includes deep, personal prayers at the end of each chapter. Though I take issue with certain elements of his theology, I encourage you to engage with this devotional classic. I know it will challenge you to grow in your appreciate of Jesus and in your pursuit of him.