Was I Created For Marriage??

I was thinking the other day … (ha! Like I’m ever not overwhelmed by thoughts) … considering that one of my recent posts, Am I Rightly Living Out My Womanhood, focuses a lot on marriage and being a wife, yet in another post I wrote, I Was Created For … (take a moment to read this post if you haven’t!) I said: I was not created for marriage.

So which is it? If we’re not created for marriage, why do we talk so much about it when we delve into the topic of womanhood?

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Well, let me explain my thoughts a little deeper.

See, if we look at my emotional, mental, and physical makeup, it would seem that I am created for marriage. On a physical and emotional level, we long for marriage and all that it entails. God did create us as sexual beings. As we grow into adulthood, we have longings. We desire closeness, intimacy. We want to be near to another human being – known body and soul – and loved despite any flaws or weaknesses we might have.

It would make sense to say that I was created for marriage because I have very natural and basic longings for marriage and intimacy. I long for a close friend and a forever partner – a man who compliments my womanhood, and with whom I can live life side by side. I long to be a mother, to carry babies, to give life, and nurture. My body is designed for procreation. I long for the purpose of a homemaker; it feels like this is what I would do best and thrive in.

Titus 2:4-5

that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed.

It makes sense … because the first woman, Eve, was created for Adam.

Yet.

First Eve belonged to God. God knew Eve better than Adam did. God knew her before Adam did. God loved her vastly more. God saved her, whereas Adam couldn’t be her savior because he was only human, just as she was. And in eternity, Christ will be Eve’s Bridegroom, not Adam.

So, for a season and for a purpose on this earth, Eve was designed – physically and emotionally – for Adam.

Genesis 2:18 & 21-24

18 And the Lord God said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.”

21 And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its place. 22 Then the rib which the Lord God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man.

23 And Adam said:

“This is now bone of my bones
And flesh of my flesh;
She shall be called Woman,
Because she was taken out of Man.”

24 Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.

 

But her eternal husband is the Lord.

(May this encourage Christian women who are in unloving or difficult marriages! The Lord is your husband, and He will care for you as an earthly husband never could.)

As a female, I am designed beautifully in all ways to be a wife. And I desire to be a wife – probably because that was the specific and perfect design from the beginning for woman!

But if I never get to live out my design as a wife and mother, I will be okay.

Because, you see, there is a deeper truth than me being designed for marriage.

And that is that I was created for God.

Ultimately, it comes down to this truth, because I will go to God in the end and I will spend my eternity with Him. And with the rest of Christ’s family. But the Lord will be my Bridegroom. Our Bridegroom.

Revelation 19:7-8

Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready.” And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.

God created earthly marriage as a picture of the ultimate marriage with Him. Marriage is the design – and a very GOOD design – but it is not what we were created for, in the end.

I would dearly love to live out my design and my heart’s longing and be a wife and mother. I would count it a great honor to grow into a godly wife, and reflect Christ and the Church together with a godly husband. What an honor! What a calling! What a light and example Christian marriages have the potential to be!

Ephesians 5:23, 25-27, & 31-33

23 For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body.

25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, 26 that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, 27 that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish.

31 “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” 32 This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church33 Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.

But right now, I am very much an unmarried woman. And I can’t get caught up in the rhetoric of: I was created for marriage; why can’t I be a wife already??

I have to remind myself that my earthly life is temporary. Marriage would be a blessing and an esteemed calling for me here on earth, but my relationship with Jesus Christ is now and forever. That is what I was created for and that is what I must press into always.

Jesus.

My Jesus. How beautiful He is! Savior. Redeemer. Father. Friend. Lord and Master. Guide. Protector. Provider. God. Lover of my soul.

I do not reject my desire for marriage. I do not pretend that I am not a sexual being.

I am passionate about God’s design for marriage and look forward to living it out if He so leads me on that path. I study it. I pray about it. I pray for it.

But first and foremost, I must embrace the forever truth that I was created for God.

And in my weakness, He shows His strength and goodness. Through my weakness, He sanctifies me if I press into Him. I try not to be ashamed of my weakness, but revel in His power and wisdom in that moment.

2 Corinthians 12:9-10

And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

My weak flesh cries out: I just want what I was designed for in this temporary life. I want a husband and children. I will settle. I will settle for the temporary, the less-than-holy, the purposelessness, and the here-and-now. Because I just want marriage.

But as Christ works in me, I say with even louder tones: No. Marriage is beautiful, but it has deeper purpose than simply giving me freedom to live out my design. I only want marriage if it will honor You. Meaning, I only want to marry a man who fears You, with whom I can radiantly glorify You, Lord! I don’t want the beauty of marriage to distract me from You. So I will wait for a godly man who is wholeheartedly Yours, that we may seek and serve You together.

2 Corinthians 11:2

For I am jealous for you with godly jealousy. For I have betrothed you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ.

May we all fall ever more in love with the Lover of our souls.

Marriage is an amazing design for our earthly lives. It is of God! He designed male and female and marriage in the beginning, and it was good. It is good.

So desire it! So study it! So pray for it!

It is not a bad thing to desire marriage – this I have been told (indirectly, at times) by so many godly brothers and sisters in Christ. Marriage is a good desire.

And, if I ponder it …

I was designed for marriage.

But again, I was created for God. I am Christ’s – I am for Him and my life for His glory.

So desire marriage.

But desire God more.

Always more.

Deuteronomy 4:29

29 But from there you will seek the Lord your God, and you will find Him if you seek Him with all your heart and with all your soul.

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Why Did God … ?

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Why?

If God always knew that Lucifer would rebel, and mankind would choose sin, and darkness would rage over the earth … then why? Why even create Lucifer? Why create the world? Why designate His Son, Jesus Christ, to be the price that had to be paid because of sin?

Why even bother? How does this make sense? Why set this plan into motion in the first place and work it out like it does?

This discussion was brought up in my Sunday school class. I’ve asked myself the same questions many times before.

I can’t wrap my mind around it, God. Why would a loving, merciful Creator create all the while knowing His angels and His people were destined for darkness? His own Son for pain and suffering?

It occurred to me that maybe it was because of us.

If God hadn’t set this all into motion, then I wouldn’t exist.

Or, maybe I would exist but I would have no free will.

No knowledge of good and evil.

No choice to choose Jesus Christ.

No realization that I was chosen despite the high cost.

If God destroyed Satan as soon as he rebelled, if He created mankind so that they would only choose Him, then we wouldn’t have the kind of indescribable love relationship that is available to us now.

1 John 3:1

Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God!

John 15:9-10

“As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. 10 If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.

John 13:34-35

34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. 35 By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”

We wouldn’t know what sin and darkness, pain and suffering are, and so we perhaps wouldn’t know the richness of His grace, goodness, light, and love.

I ask: God, why did You create us when you knew we were going to sin?

Then I ask: Shantelle, would you rather not exist at all? Would you rather not have had the chance to live, to experience joy, to love? To know a Savior who loves you more than anyone else possible could and will never let you down?

I think I would rather feel everything than nothing at all.

If you never felt pain and loss, then perhaps you would never feel real, rich, abiding, abundant LOVE.

1 Corinthians 13:13

13 And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

If you never had free will, then you wouldn’t know the awesome reality of FREEDOM when you are released from your chains.

Without darkness, we would not know LIGHT.

Without sin, without Jesus Christ going to the cross, I would not have been able to choose the relationship that God offers exclusively to mankind.

1 Peter 1:10-12 & 22

10 Of this salvation the prophets have inquired and searched carefully, who prophesied of the grace that would come to you, 11 searching what, or what manner of time, the Spirit of Christ who was in them was indicating when He testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow. 12 To them it was revealed that, not to themselves, but to us they were ministering the things which now have been reported to you through those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven—things which angels desire to look into.

22 Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart, 23 having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever,

Maybe God has this plan, set this all into motion, allowed sin and darkness, because He wanted us. For His glory and our good. And He wanted us to be able to CHOOSE HIM, and know this incredibly sweet love and communion that perhaps we could not have felt otherwise.

Isaiah 40:11

11 He will feed His flock like a shepherd;
He will gather the lambs with His arm,
And carry them in His bosom,
And gently lead those who are with young.

Psalm 63:1, 3-5 

O God, You are my God;
Early will I seek You;
My soul thirsts for You;
My flesh longs for You

Because Your lovingkindness is better than life,
My lips shall praise You.
Thus I will bless You while I live;
I will lift up my hands in Your name.
My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness,
And my mouth shall praise You with joyful lips.

When I remember You on my bed,
I meditate on You in the night watches.
Because You have been my help,
Therefore in the shadow of Your wings I will rejoice.
My soul follows close behind You;
Your right hand upholds me.

Zephaniah 3:17

17 The Lord your God in your midst,
The Mighty One, will save;
He will rejoice over you with gladness,
He will quiet you with His love,
He will rejoice over you with singing.”

1 John 4:7-11

Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is loveIn this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. 10 In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.

Despite the war that would start between good and evil; despite the darkness and wickedness that would prowl over the earth; despite the pain His own beloved people would suffer; despite the people who would reject Him even though He offered them everything … Jesus Christ willingly endured it all and became the sacrifice because He wanted us who He knew would say “yes” when He opened His arms.

I mean, Jesus Christ died! God’s own Son. If someone gives up their one, beloved Son for you when you don’t care anything for them, you know they love you.

Romans 5:6-10

For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for usMuch more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. 10 For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.

Without all this, I wouldn’t know I am deeply loved by Someone who would never fail me.

People fail me. Leave me. Hurt me. They say they love me, but I can never lean on them fully.

But I can lean on God fully. I can run, unreservedly, to His arms and know He will welcome me there.

John 8:7-12

So when they continued asking Him, He raised Himself up and said to them, “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.” And again He stooped down and wrote on the ground. Then those who heard it, being convicted by their conscience, went out one by one, beginning with the oldest even to the last. And Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. 10 When Jesus had raised Himself up and saw no one but the woman, He said to her, “Woman, where are those accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you?”

11 She said, “No one, Lord.”

And Jesus said to her, “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.”

12 Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”

Matthew 9:20-22

20 And suddenly, a woman who had a flow of blood for twelve years came from behind and touched the hem of His garment. 21 For she said to herself, “If only I may touch His garment, I shall be made well.” 22 But Jesus turned around, and when He saw her He said, “Be of good cheer, daughter; your faith has made you well.” And the woman was made well from that hour.

Because He chose to create me knowing I, like all of the human race, WOULD CHOSE DARKNESS.

And He went willingly to His death knowing eventually I WOULD ACCEPT HIS GIFT.

And He wanted me. He pursued me. He had a plan for me to be His before the creation of the world.

Luke 15:4-7

“What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one which is lost until he finds it? And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!’ I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents

He gave me a chance to experience a radical, incomparable, unconditional, eternal love relationship with Him.

And all I can do is accept it and thank Him and give my heart and soul to Him.

Because He chose ME despite the cost.

He set it all into motion and endures all the darkness and rejection and willingly goes through the pain because He wants those of us who He knew would accept His gift when He pursued us.

2 Peter 3:9

The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.

So, I think He did it all because He wanted us who He knew would trust in Jesus Christ and come to live forever with Him. He wanted us to experience a love that is impossible to know otherwise. He wanted us to be part of His family. He wanted us to experience beautiful relationships with each other here on earth, and when we go to our eternal home!

1 Thessalonians 3:12-13

12 And may the Lord make you increase and abound in love to one another and to all, just as we do to you, 13 so that He may establish your hearts blameless in holiness before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all His saints.

Praise the Lord, what a marvelous gift He has bestowed on us! May we live all for His glory. May we rest in His all-encompassing love. May we praise Him forevermore.

Psalm 36:5-6

Your mercy, O Lord, is in the heavens;
Your faithfulness reaches to the clouds.
Your righteousness is like the great mountains;
Your judgments are a great deep;
Lord, You preserve man and beast.

Deuteronomy 7:9

“Therefore know that the Lord your God, He is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and mercy for a thousand generations with those who love Him and keep His commandments;

Do I want to know God?

Who is God?

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Do you know Him? Or do you prefer not to know Him, so you don’t have to feel any discomfort over shocking Old Testament happenings and radical commands from the New Testament?

Is your god God? Or is he a benevolent, prayer-answering, rather un-god-like figure who fits quite neatly into your compartmentalized life in which your religion is but one, tidy, unrelated compartment?

The fact is, God is kind. And He does answer prayers. But He is also very much God. He created the universe and He created you, and He does not have to answer to you or do things as you dictate.

How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God!
Therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of Your wings.
They are abundantly satisfied with the fullness of Your house,
And You give them drink from the river of Your pleasures.
For with You is the fountain of life;
In Your light we see light. (Psalm 36:7-9)

The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. (James 5:16)

14 Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. (1 John 5:14)

20 But indeed, O man, who are you to reply against God? Will the thing formed say to him who formed it, “Why have you made me like this?” (Romans 9:20)

It seems to me that a lot of people like to claim God. One woman thanks God for her boyfriend (who is not a Christian and has led her into sin) and another talks about how God blessed her with the baby she prayed for in His perfect timing while she’s unapologetically living in sin. Sin that God declared was sin and was off-limits for His followers.

It is never for me to condemn someone’s soul. But I only have to briefly glance at these people’s lives to see that what they’re saying does not match up with what they’re doing. One cannot follow God and still live blatantly in sin. God hates sin. And as His adopted children, sin should be our burden.

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14 Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.

15 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. 16 You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? 17 Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit.19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Therefore by their fruits you will know them. (Matthew 7:14-20)

So I have to wonder. Do these people even have any idea who God is? Some claim to know Him and to follow Jesus Christ, but have they let Him be God in their lives? Have they let themselves truly know Him?

Imagine that these people, indeed, are not true believers. That they have not believed in Jesus Christ, trusted Him to save them from their sins, and surrendered their lives to Him.

Imagine that on the last day, they declare: “Lord, we publicly thanked You on Facebook! We prayed to You for a baby and gave the credit to You in front of our fans and followers! We started going to church after watching Heaven is for Real!”

And what if God tells them: “Depart from me. I don’t know you.”

21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’ (Matthew 7:21-23)

What are they going to say in response? “Um … well … I guess I didn’t really know You, either. In fact, I didn’t really want to know You—the real You, not just the You that fit into my “religion compartment”; my fire insurance, my guilt-easer, my feel-good fix when I start getting uncertain and depressed—because I didn’t want to stop living the way I was living. I was afraid of what You might ask me to give up. I didn’t trust You and believe You were who You said You were. I didn’t believe You really loved me. I didn’t believe You were good.”

So I made up my own god. One that let me be in control. One that didn’t care how sinfully and selfishly I lived. One who always gave me what I wanted. One that didn’t tell me what to do or how to live. One that I didn’t have to trust, or surrender to, or give up control to, or follow.

I was worried there really might a possibility of hell. I wanted to go to heaven when I died. I wanted only warm, fuzzy, feel-goods from my god figure. I didn’t want to completely disappoint my family. I wanted my prayers answered and the desires of my heart given to me.

But I didn’t want You.

But God is God. And if you try to change Him in order to fit Him into how you want your life to be, you’re only creating a false idol, and you do not know God.

How we, in our frail, pathetic, human arrogance think we can do what we want, run our lives, dictate who God is and what He does and then think He will honor that—when He is the one who breathed everything that exists into motion; when He is the one who thought us up and knit us together in our mother’s womb—is the epitome of foolishness.

Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He who says, “I know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked. (1 John 2:3-6)

What a horrifying stench our pride must be to the one and only God. The Creator of Heaven and Earth. The King of kings and Lord of lords.

Our pride, though. Not us.

I don’t believe that our scent disgusts God.

I am not perfect. I am a sinner. I fail again and again. I am even guilty of the things I mentioned above – trying to fit God into my limited comfort zone. Avoiding passages of Scripture I can’t understand.

But still, I have been saved. And I do not say in despair: “How deplorable I must be to God.” But I say: “I am a child of the King. I am God’s princess.” Because of His love; His mercy and grace. Because of Jesus Christ. Because I have accepted His sacrifice and gift, and He is teaching me to walk His path.

23 Search me, O God, and know my heart;
Try me, and know my anxieties;
24 And see if there is any wicked way in me,
And lead me in the way everlasting. (Psalm 139:23-24)

Listen, friends, this post may be a warning, but it is not a condemnation. God, as all He truly is, loved us while we were yet dead in our sins. Before we trusted Jesus Christ.

But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. 10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them. (Ephesians 2:4-10)

16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. (John 3:16-17)

If you realize you’ve been guilty of not surrendering to God, not trusting that He’s good, not believing in Him and in His Word, you should not run away no matter what shame you feel. You should run to God.

He can turn your shame into a testimony.

Your sorrow into joy. Your doubt into faith.

Humble your heart before Him. Be honest with Him. The time for pretensions, and faking, and fear, and ignorance, and trying to manipulate everything into your version of how life should be is long past over.

Try praying: God, create in me a desire for You. Give me the strength to surrender everything to You. Help me to trust that You are good. Teach my heart to know Your unconditional love for me. Show me how to love You. Reveal Yourself to me and help me to live up to the term “Christian” by actually following Christ!

No matter the consequences, the sacrifices, the discomfort, the humility—no matter the mountains of questions I don’t have answers to and the many things I can’t understand.

I want to know You.

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And simply trust Him.

Instead of shutting my Bible when I come across a passage or verse I don’t understand, I’ve learned to talk honestly with God. “Lord, I don’t understand this. It seems like a hard teaching to me. But, You are God and I am not. Your thoughts are higher than my thoughts, and Your ways are higher than my ways.”

“For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord.
“For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
So are My ways higher than your ways,
And My thoughts than your thoughts. (Isaiah 55:8-9)

Learn to be okay with not knowing everything. Not understanding all. Not being in control. Let God be God.

Because He is.

I also learned to speak truth over myself. To meditate on His love. To pray daily and deeply. To ask God to show me how to love Him! To give me faith. To help me trust. To make my heart’s desire for Him. To give me a hunger for His Word. A heart for the people of the world – all created in His image! A passion for His design.

Lord, help me to delight in You! In Your words. In spending time with You. In talking to You.

Surrender to Him, friends! He is God, beyond what we can imagine and comprehend! He is love. He is holy. He is able. He is forgiving. He is compassionate. He is merciful and gracious. He is the giver of good gifts!

For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent? 11 If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him! (Matthew 7:8-11)

(That reminds me of a Youtube video I watched by Joseph Solomon that was very inspiring. Watch it below.)

Anyway.

Do you want to know God?

Surrender to Him and seek Him with all your heart. Stop searching for what you want, and search for Him.

13 And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart. (Jeremiah 29:13)