What are you current pursuing? When you look at the definition for the word ‘pursue’ it can mean “follow or chase… to go after, run after”. Throughout the course of my life so far, there have been numerous things I have pursued- acceptance, love, stability, family, security, high achievement, happiness. When I am dead and buried though, which of these things will last? Which of these things will have really been something to live for?
In Psalm 63, David cries out to God in prayer when he was fleeing those who tried to kill him. It is thought that David was probably fleeing his son Absalom, as he was already king when he wrote this (Psalm 63:11). David so full of emotion says, “O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.” (Psalm 63:1). David confidently declares his pursuit of God in a clear and straightforward way. He shows his possession of and confidence in his relationship with God. David has a great understanding that God is real, living and active. The way David uses thirst and flesh, he declares he is pursuing God with all of his being (Spurgeon).
David continues to show that he longs to “enjoy God” (Henry), “So I have looked upon you in the sanctuary, beholding your power and glory. Because your steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise you. So I will bless you as long as I live; in your name I will life up my hands” (Psalm 63:2-4). Here, David shows that he has spent time worshipping God in the sanctuary of the tabernacle, and he longs now in the wilderness to commune with his God. David doesn’t long for a comfortable bed, he longs and pursues the Almighty God.
In Psalm 63:5-8, David declares that while he can’t go and meet with God in the sanctuary of the tabernacle, he can remember and meditate on God in any circumstance (Psalm 63:6). Not only will David be satisfied with this, his soul will be satisfied as with fat and rich food (v. 5) and the result of this is that David bursts into joyful song. David could have chosen to look inward, as he was literally on the run for his life, yet he declares his pursuit of God and choice to spend time with God. He remembers that God has been his help (v.7) and that he is in the shadow of God’s wings and so he will sing for joy (v.7). David trusts that while the world around him may be turbulent, God is Sovereign and God’s right hand upholds him (Psalm 63:8).
In my day to day mothering of a 3 year old and 8 month old, I so often longed for peace and quiet to spend time communing with God. Yet I was challenged to not wait for this. Like David, we shouldn’t wait until we are at church, or for the perfect situation, instead we can pursue our God confidently, any time of the day or night. We can praise him and be satisfied and rest in the shadow of His wings. As we meditate on God’s Word and lift up joyful songs in praise to Him, may we also know the security that as our souls cling to God, His right hand upholds us.
As Spurgeon urges, “the absence of outward comforts can be borne with serenity when we walk with God; … Only after God, therefore, let us pant. Let all desires be gathered into one. Seeking first the kingdom of God—all else shall be added unto us.”