Nearly forty years ago, I received a package in the mail from a dear friend. The package contained a pen and ink drawing of an eagle in flight against a mountainous backdrop. The eagle was surrounded by the following inscription.
“A man will know when he is chosen by God for a life of quest.
The restless urge within him is an eagle in his breast.
Let him turn from seeking and the eagle will eat his heart.
Rest? There is no rest for the seeker with an eagle in his breast.
The picture has been hanging on the wall in my office since the day that it arrived.
The inscription is a bit disturbing for some, but every true seeker with an eagle in their breast will understand. The restlessness that I sense in my own heart has nothing to do with a lack of satisfaction with my Lord Jesus. It has everything to do with the fact that there is more to be known about Him than I presently know.
The Apostle Paul said in I Corinthians 13:12 that, “…now we see through a glass, darkly” (KJV). Meaning that our best seeing of anything spiritual is partial, there is so much more to yet be discovered. This restlessness is rooted in an anxiety to get on with the journey, a journey that leads higher up and further into greater discovery of God and His infinite heart.
As lovers of Jesus, we must resist settling down with our motors idling or being content to rest inside the harbor instead of launching into the great deeps of the heart of God. Jesus said, “Ask and keep on asking and it will be given to you; seek and keep on seeking and you will find; knock and keep on knocking and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks the door will be opened” (Matthew 7:7-8).
One of my heroes of the faith is the late Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Germany’s Pastor, Prophet, Martyr, and Spy. Bonhoeffer took a bold stand against the Third Reich and the leadership of Adolf Hitler. His stand for righteousness cost him greatly. He was eventually imprisoned and ultimately hanged for his perceived crimes against the Nazi regime. I am presently reading another Bonhoeffer biography that I recently discovered, Radical Integrity by Michal Van Dyke. And today, while reading, I came across a statement that Bonhoeffer made while in prison, a statement concerning seekers.
The seeker watches and waits.
He is blind to every force that comes between him and God.
Only one thing is of importance to him.
He wants to see God. He wants to hear God.
He wants to know God. He wants to serve God.
He wants nothing else in this world like he wants God.
Psalm 73:25 records the cry of the seeker’s heart, “Whom have I in heaven but You? And besides You, I desire nothing on earth.”
The word mediocre, comes to English via French from the Latin word mediocris, meaning, halfway up to the top. True seekers won’t be satisfied until they are on top of the mountain. Sadly to say, seekers are often an enigma to those who are satisfied with their present view, halfway up the mountain.