Here are some verses that are designed to draw our hearts in.
1 O God, You are my God; Early will I seek You; My soul thirsts for You; My flesh longs for You In a dry and thirsty land Where there is no water. 2 So I have looked for You in the sanctuary, To see Your power and Your glory. Psalm 63:1-2 (NKJV)
4 One thing I have desired of the LORD, That will I seek: That I may dwell in the house of the LORD All the days of my life, To behold the beauty of the LORD, And to inquire in His temple. Psalm 27:4 (NKJV)
18 But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord. 2 Corinthians 3:18 (NKJV)
If we are not, or have not, experienced the reality of 2 Corinthians 3:18 it may be that we need to understand and apply the verses in the Psalms. A literal rendering of Psalm 63:2 from the Hebrew is, So I have looked upon You in the sanctuary, beholding Your power and glory. That is in fact how the ESV renders it,
2 So I have looked upon you in the sanctuary, beholding your power and glory. Psalm 63:2 (ESV)
The word ‘see/behold’ in Psalm 63:2 is the same Hebrew translated behold in Psalm 27:4. In both Psalms there is an expression of a longing and desire to encounter our King and our God. We have David giving expression to the key longing in his life, a desire for intimacy with Yahweh.
Paul’s heart mirrors David’s but to get to Paul’s heart in 2 Corinthians 3:18 it is important to read Philippians 3:7-14 where Paul gives voice to his one ‘one thing’ longing and says he has given up everything else for his pursuit of Jesus heart. It may be tempting to assume the transformation spoken of by Paul, this beholding, is automatic, it is not. Beholding Jesus is a choice. After all 2 Corinthians 3:17 tells us that where the Holy Spirit is we have liberty. We must choose to pursue His heart and value His presence enough to be transformed.
Is this beholding easy to do? Yes. Is it difficult to maintain? Yes. I do not know what works for everyone. I know in my own life I need to set aside distractions and by faith focus the gaze of my heart upon Him. I usually do not see anything, I do experience His presence and hear Him speaking to my heart. When I am faithful in this pursuit it spills over into other parts of my day. Others can assess whether or not I am being transformed into His image, I know I am encountering His heart.
So, find a way and time that works for you and make it a habit to come to Him with a hunger and longing. He will fill it.
This song gives expression to a longing heart. The idea of ‘waiting’ in the Old Testament is to look to Yahweh with expectation. Waiting Here for You