One of my very favorite themes of the Scriptures is that God wants to be with us. He didn’t create us out of a “have to” mentality, now just wanting to keep his distance. It’s the opposite! He created us out of love, and he wants to be with us; he’s gone to every possible length to do so.
Think about the Tabernacle, the Temple, Jesus himself incarnating—coming in flesh to dwell among us—and now, for those of us who are in Christ, his Holy Spirit living inside us as the new temple. God has gone to great lengths to redeem relationship with us.
That begs the question for you and I: how do we show the same intentionality in seeking his presence that he showed when he sought after us? The psalmist commands us to seek God‘s presence continually. The best way I know how to answer the question is to think about how aware we are of what God’s doing in our lives. How can I grow in my awareness?
You and I know that at times we can be in the same room—technically “present” with one another—but unaware of how each other are doing. I could be unaware of your emotional state; I could even, on some days, be unaware of what you’re wearing! We’re “present” but we’re unaware. And that can happen in our life with God. We’re in his presence technically, but we’re not aware of what he’s doing in our lives. We’re unaware of how he’s working in the world around us.
One of the ways we bring intentionality back into seeking God‘s presence is by becoming more and more aware of his work in our lives. We pay attention to what he’s doing around us so that we can join him in it. I think that’s such a helpful, practical way that we can become more present to the God who’s always been present with us.