3 Ways to Seek God With Your Whole Heart

In Jeremiah 29:13, God says that if you seek him with your whole heart, you will find him. But, what does it really mean to pursue God so completely? In this post, we’ll talk about how to seek God with your whole heart.

how to seek God with your whole heart

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I’ll never forget my freshman year of college. It was culture shock, in a good way! You see, I grew up attending Sunday school and believing in God’s existence, but I only saw Christianity as religion, not as a relationship with God.

But there I was, starting my college experience at a Christian university, surrounded by new friends and classmates who talked about Jesus as if he was their best friend! What kind of strange love potion were these people drinking?!

Over time, I came to understand what they already knew: That being a Christian is not about following a religion, but about knowing a person—Jesus Christ. It’s about what Jesus did on the cross—giving his very life in atonement for our sins—so that we could be forgiven, made righteous by his blood, and thus able to have a close relationship with God.

new life in Jesus Christ

What does it mean to seek God wholeheartedly?

I admit, even after accepting Christ as my Lord and Savior in college, there’ve been far too many times when I’ve chased after the rituals of faith, rather than seeking God Himself.

Maybe you’ve been there too?

And if so, I’m sure you would agree, that in this fallen and messy world it’s all too easy to focus on the created things and not on our Creator. I know that for me, it’s a constant growth process (a.k.a. struggle!) to learn to seek God first.

Oftentimes, I find myself fixated on the blessings God gives me, rather than seeking God’s presence. Or, I get so immersed in DOING things, that I don’t stop to ask for God’s guidance.

Ultimately, I believe that seeking God wholeheartedly means that we’re learning to give him our full attention. That even as we go about our day, we can pray continually, stop and seek his guidance when necessary, rest in his presence, and walk hand in hand with him as our Lord and Savior. Instead of finding solace in other things first (like the advice of a coworker, the emotional “comfort” of food, surfing the internet, etc.), we go FIRST to God to have our needs met.

“To arrive at union with God, all one needs is a heart resolutely determined to apply itself to nothing but Him, do nothing but for His sake, and to love Him only.”
~Brother Lawrence, The Practice of the Presence of God

seek God with your whole heart

How to Seek God With Your Whole Heart

Like I mentioned above, all of this is a work in progress. I definitely don’t have it all “figured out”! So, if you feel like you’re lost in a sea of worldly distractions, and you haven’t a clue how to seek God wholeheartedly, rest assured you are not alone. And also, God sees you and he understands! If your aim is to genuinely seek him, you WILL find him. Have patience with your spiritual growth, and trust that “he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (Philippians 1:6).

That being said, there are a few essential steps to seeking God that I’ve learned (and continue to learn) along my spiritual journey. If you want to know how to seek God with your whole heart, start here…

1) Approach God with an attitude of fear/reverence/awe/worship

Do you ever stop and think about how amazing it is that God created you? That he knew you even before you were born? He is the all-powerful, all-knowing, all-good Creator of the universe, who is absolutely worthy of our praise. God created us for relationship with Him, and he desires our full devotion and adoration.

praise and worship

When I consider your heavens,
the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars,
which you have set in place,
what is mankind that you are mindful of them,
human beings that you care for them?

Psalm 8:3-4 (NIV)

For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mothers’ womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful
I know that full well.

Psalm 139:13-14 (NIV)

Therefore, let us offer through Jesus a continual sacrifice of praise to God, proclaiming our allegiance to his name.
Hebrews 13:15 (NLT)

So therefore, if you want to seek God with your whole heart, it helps to remind yourself of just how worthy of praise and glory God truly is. Don’t we owe him our very lives? Then, maybe it would be a great idea to cut back on the amount of “worship” we give to the things of this world (the latest culture craze, celebrities, TV shows, etc.), and give more worship to God.

give God your whole heart

2) Cultivate a humble and repentant heart

By the same token, since we know God is worthy of all praise and glory, we should seek him with humble hearts. Clearly, we have all sinned and fallen short of his glory (Romans 3:23), and yet he gave his only Son Jesus Christ to pay the price for our sins. So, if we’re to seek God honestly and openly, we need to confess our sins regularly, and make sincere effort to turn away from them (repent).

We think we know so much (about life, what we want out of it, what we deem is “good” for us), and yet, we really know diddly squat (a.k.a. nothing)! But up in the heavens, God sees EVERYTHING. He knows what he knows, because he is GOD! And, we are not. It seems like every day, I have another realization about just how little I know, and how much credit and trust I need to give to God. We can’t seek him with our whole hearts, if we’re still trying to approach him as if we know what he should do or how he should act.

Imagine a pauper who begs at the King’s gate…the King, in his great love and generosity, brought the pauper into his castle, and made the pauper a member of his own family. The King feeds and clothes the pauper in splendor, and provides for his every need. So, wouldn’t it be foolish and ungrateful of the pauper to question that provision? Like, “Wait, you’re only going to give me three sets of clothes? I need ten! And what about that chocolate cake I requested? I mean, the soup was delicious and nourishing, but I really wanted that cake!”. What nerve!

But yet, don’t we often talk that way to God, like he owes us something? What do we really know anyway? (Again, diddly squat!) To seek God in the best way possible, we need to remember that HE is God, we are not, and he is so generous to give us everything that he does. Not that we can’t ask him for more, but we’re not entitled to it, and only God knows what’s truly best for us.

“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”
Matthew 6:33 (NIV)

At the end of the day, one of the benefits of seeking God is to admit that there’s a lot we don’t know, and just to let go and let God. He is more than capable of handling our problems!

humble man praying

3) Lean on God’s grace

Which brings me to our last point, which is to lean on God’s grace. As we’re seeking God, it can be tempting to try and muscle our way through some things (like trying to love difficult people, or being more generous with our resources). But at the end of the day, we find ourselves still falling short.

I can’t even tell you how many days I’ve tried to pray continually, or love my neighbors, or stay focused on Jesus, but felt like I was failing miserably (like, if I were grading myself on an exam, I would give myself a big red ZERO!). What I’ve realized, is that I was TRYING to do all those things, without seeking God in the midst of it. It’s only when I make a point to communicate with God throughout the day, that I make good progress, and that I can also rest in His Grace and not berate myself for the areas that I fell short in that day.

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.
John 15:5 (NIV)

Therefore let us [with privilege] approach the throne of grace [that is, the throne of God’s gracious favor] with confidence and without fear, so that we may receive mercy [for our failures] and find [His amazing] grace to help in time of need [an appropriate blessing, coming just at the right moment].
Hebrews 4:16 (AMP)

focus on Jesus mini-course

How do I find God in my life?

Lastly, in all this talk about reverence + humility + grace, you might be thinking “That’s great, but how do I actually discern God’s presence in my life?”.

In the Bible, we see that God makes himself known in numerous different ways (the burning bush (Exodus 3:1-4), a still small voice (1 Kings 19:11-18), a vision (Acts 10:9-16), just to name a few). For a God who is ALL-powerful, ALL-knowing, and for whom ALL things are possible, there’s no limit to the ways God may speak to you or show his presence.

rainbow - a sign of hope and God's promises

This may be different for each of us, but in my life, there are two main signs of God’s presence that I experience. The first, is simply in His Word…there’ve been so many times when I’ve asked him something in prayer, and then opened up my Bible and there’s the answer right in front of me. BOOM!

And the second, is just those unexplainable life events that feel like God is ‘talking’ to me. One day, I was Bible journaling on Psalm 8:1 ~ “…how majestic is your name in all the earth! You have set your glory in the heavens.” And not an hour later, I looked out my bedroom window and there was a beautiful rainbow! And just recently, I did a Bible journal on Daniel 3:16-18, and the very next morning I got in my car to go to work, and the very first song playing on the radio was MercyMe “Even If” which is based on that same Scripture. What are the odds???

Of course, there are so many more ways to experience God’s presence. Spending time in nature, singing praise and worship songs, and seeking God in prayer are a few such ways. Experiencing miracles, like a healing, or receiving an anonymous check at exactly the right time that you were asking God for help paying a bill, or that person you’ve been praying for who finally turned their life around, are all reminders of God’s presence, power, and provision. If we just look for God’s fingerprints on our lives, we’ll find that we’re covered in them!

So, in closing, what does it mean to seek God first? The most important thing we can remember when learning how to seek God with our whole hearts, is to seek HIM and HIM alone. Set aside the material blessings, the rain or sunshine, and all the other fluff in the created world…if we seek to truly KNOW God, and to walk with him, talk with him, and to do what is pleasing in his sight, we will find him.

73 thoughts on “3 Ways to Seek God With Your Whole Heart”

  1. I came across your blog when I was searching for “Seeking God”. I like the way you broke it down and used scriptures to support your reasons. If we all seek the Lord, this world will be a better place. Thanks for your blog, looking forward to reading more of your posts. God bless you.

    1. You’re welcome, Joanna! Indeed, when we seek God and have more of His presence in our lives, we can be so much better as people and as His church.

    2. Like Joanna63, I too came across your blog when searching for “seeking God with your whole heart.” You put into words some of the things that I too struggle with and some of my exact feelings, even to the point of berating myself for my continual struggle in my relationship with Him. Thank you for publishing this article! Continue to allow Him to use you!

      1. You’re welcome! It is certainly not easy, and some days are more of a struggle than others, but it’s so worth it to keep seeking God! I will definitely continue to write and share encouragement in Jesus’ name. 🥰 🙏🏻

    1. Dolores buenbrazo

      Thanks for this blog..find it very doable and understandable practical ways on how to seek God earnestly. God bless you

  2. Wesiona D. Walker

    Thank you your post…..it was an easy read with appropriate scriptures as I seek more of God.

  3. Amuriat James

    I personally found this article on 3 ways of seeking God with whole heart very inspiring and broadening understanding of getting closer to God.

  4. Shamane Miller

    I sooo needed this, because my curiosity about growing a closer relationship with GOD is most definitely imperative for me on my spiritual journey to salvation! I desire to know as much as possible especially in these trying times. Yet, I procrastinate and I totally despise that about myself. #workinprogress Thanks 🙏🏽 so much for this blog🙏🏽♥️🙏🏽♥️

    1. Barbara Austin

      You’re welcome! ♥️ You are definitely not alone in that; we are all works in progress. I love what Philippians 1:6 (NLT) says: And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.

  5. Ileana Ramirez

    Thank you so much for this I truly needed guidance and this page helped me a lot Ms.Austin I will be praying for you ❤️

  6. Hey there, I recently got out of a GREAT relationship with a Christian girl (being a Christian myself) who I was ready to marry. She told me “no, now is not the time”, and not long after that she broke up with me after 2 years to let me know she believes it’s Gods will that she follow Him, wholeheartedly. As you can imagine, I was quite broken at first! And, there is ofcourse still a tinge of desire to be with her after a few months now. Thankfully however, I decided not to hate God/move away from him, but to try and do the same, and that is why I am here. Thank you for sharing these expereinces and knowledge, it really helps!
    If you are in the same boat, or a similar one, don’t fret, GOD LOVES YOU, and He IS with you…it is all for his glory. Seek Him!
    I pray that all of you keep on with your journey with God, He is truly all we need. Seek Him, and he will provide everything you need anyways 🙂

    1. Barbara Austin

      Hi Rob, thank you for sharing your story. I absolutely agree, God is all we need! It’s not always easy to see that, but it’s so true.

  7. Thank you for writing this! I’m so happy I stumbled across it as I studied Psalm 119:1-2 and was searching up “what does it mean to seek God with my whole heart?”.
    Very timely because with so many distractions it’s easy to think I know best for my life as I go crazy Googling answers for everything. So not true! God’s will is what I want for my life! God bless you, Barbara. 🙂

    1. You’re welcome Melissa! I can totally relate; sometimes it’s tempting to think we can find answers to our problems everywhere else but with God. It’s a choice we need to make every day, to turn to Him first and seek His will. ❤️

    1. That is wonderful, Thomas! The Bible says to be saved, you need to repent of your sins, and believe in Jesus.

      If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. ~Romans 10:9-10 (NIV)

      Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. ~Acts 2:38 (NIV)

      It’s simple, really. Just pray to Jesus, tell Him you believe in Him, and that you want to repent (turn away) from your sins and be forgiven.

  8. Thank you for sharing your experience about seeking God with all your heart. The article is an answer to prayer. God bless you and more grace.

  9. Thank you so much for this article. It did help me to focus on God way more fully, and brought me closer to Him. God bless you for this!

  10. Hi Barbara! I never wrote a comment on any article until now. I’m in awe. Yesterday, I researched on how to seek God with my whole heart and came across this article and began reading it. It was soooo good to my spirit, that I was led this morning, to share it on Facebook to help others! The amazing part is as I finished reading this, I noticed my name at the bottom and realized that we shared the same name! To God be the glory! Continue to let God use you for His glory. Thank you

  11. I thought I was missing a lot, and felt guilty of the thought that i was not seeking God. I finally came to realize how seeking God means – it is those times you don’t realize that He is touching you or that He is also being present in real situations. The moment you incorporate Him ( Jesus, Our Lord) in your actions, in your words and in your beliefs. I believe in that way, we have always seek God. And it can happen even every hour of everyday. We just didn’t quite notice it. I am grateful I have came across your blog. I hope I can read more of his words, thru the bible. Thank you 🙂

    1. You’re welcome! 😊 And that is so true, part of seeking God, is seeking to do His will in everything we do. 🙏🏻

  12. Nabatanzi jemimah

    Am so blessed to read this…may God grant you more wisdom n knowledge and may His face shine upon you and your family!

  13. Hi ‘ mine is to thank you for your blog about “seeking God” it has helped me greatly for I’ve stayed along time without having knowledge of how to seek God with all my heart

  14. This piece is a blessing to me.. being feeling so dry and empty and i asked the Lord to reveal himself to me. then i heard Jer 29:13 in my heart. wanted to know how to seek God whole heartedly and i ended up here. Thank you so much

  15. Asaolu oluwatosin

    Thanks for this piece…it really helped me… I’ve been so downcasted for a long time, everything seems not to work,I wanted to end my life cause I’m confused..I’m glad I read it and I need you to pray for me to hold on to God and now waver..

  16. Dearly beloved,
    You bring your inspired message to bare so soothingly on my heart. It’s literally working John 1:14 in me. How I long to abide continually in the aura of its grace.
    Thank God for so deep in the meditation of His word that made this raw exhortation possible, and coming to me.. Cheers!

  17. Just want thank whoever put out these words of wisdom confirmations and encouragement to have a closer life with God.

  18. Well I took a 2023 word generator and I got SEEK. I googled “seek” and your blog popped up. Perfect and inspired by the Holy Spirit. I also struggle with reading the gospels so your bible journalling tips will lead me well into 2023.

    1. Hi Sarah, I’m so glad you’re here! “Seek” is actually going to be my word for 2023 as well! Jesus’ words in Matthew 6:33 have been on my mind a lot lately, and I hope this inspires you as it does me, to seek God FIRST: “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”

  19. I came upon your blog when looking for “seeking God with your whole heart!” I was in a place where I felt that I was stagnant but your blog help me to realize that we all experience this on our journey. God is so faithful and merciful that He’s waiting for us with open arm to reassure His children that He loves us unconditionally and is alway near us.
    Thank you!

    1. You’re welcome Debra! It’s true, we all experience different seasons of faith, like times of doubt or struggle. But God is always there, waiting for us to seek Him first. He can breathe life back into us; as Psalm 23:3 says “He refreshes my soul”. 🙌🏻 💖

  20. I came across your blog post while digging into what it means to seek God for my Bible study students. Thank you for the three succinct points you made. I will pass them on.

    The only thing I would suggest is that the concept of “let go and let God” isn’t scriptural. It actually comes from the old version (since corrected) of Keswick theology. I do understand the sentiment behind it, but we don’t “let” God do anything. We are to ‘work out our salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in us both to will and to do according to his good pleasure.’ We are never passive. Thanks again!

    1. Barbara Austin

      You’re welcome, and thank you for your perspective. I think there is definitely a balance between doing our part vs. letting God do His… ultimately, He is in control though, and we do need to let go of our own desire to control the outcomes of life. (See Romans 8:28, Philippians 1:6, and Proverbs 16:9).

  21. Thank you so much for this incredible insight,u talked about the many ways of God ‘s presence in our lives,woow🙏,I thank God for using you,God just spoke toe through you,been struggling when it comes to seeking the face of God,and I’ve just realized that sometimes we fail because we don’t want to let go of certain habits,what we spend most of our time doing,and watching TV shows,and social media is one of our biggest problem,Thank you

    1. You’re welcome! And yes, you’re absolutely right, we need to let go of worldly things in order to embrace more godly things. As Matthew 6:33 (NIV) says, “seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well”.

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