It’s a preacher story you may have heard before. Nevertheless I will repeat it. A farmer was working in his field, near the main highway in the area. As he worked, up the road came a wagon with a family onboard. The wagon stopped and the driver, a man, hailed him. He explained that his family was moving and he wanted to ask what the people in the nearest town were like, so he could decide whether to stop or go on. The farmer replied, “Well, that’s an interesting question. Tell me, though, what were the people like where you came from?” The man on the wagon went on about how they were all a bunch of crooks and idiots, and that the reason they were moving was to get out of that town. “Well,” said the farmer (who seemed to like to start every time he spoke with “well”), “it’s interesting that you say that, because that is just the kind of people in this town. I’m a gonna have to say you’d better move on farther.” A short while later another wagon, with a family onboard, stopped. The driver asked the same question. The farmer replied, “Well, that’s an interesting question. Tell me, though, what were the people like where you came from?” The man on the wagon sadly replied that they were the best people in the world, who would give you the shirts off their backs if that was what you needed. He said they were sorry to leave that town, but needed to find work elsewhere. “Well,” said the farmer, “it’s interesting that you say that, because that is just the kind of people in this town. In fact, if you can wait a few minutes ‘til I finish this job, I will ride with you into town and introduce you to the owner of the best hotel. I’ll see that he gives you a good rate until you can get settled.”
In life, in worship, in anything you do, you get out of it what you put in. Some people in this world seem to look for the negative in everything. If they look you in the eye, all they can see is the piece of sawdust, and not the wood you are sawing to build a house for somebody in need. When you deal with such people, though, you need to watch for them to shake their head, so you can duck that plank that is in their own eyes.
The challenge is always to look for the positive. If that is what you are looking for, that is what you will find. “If you’re looking for failure you don’t have to look very far.” But do you want people to look for your failures? No, you want them to see the good in you. So you need to look for the good in them. “Seek and ye shall find.” (Matt 7:7) If you are looking for the good you will find it. Maybe that is what is meant by “love covers a multitude of sins.” (1 Pet 4:8)
Most importantly, you should be seeking that most positive of all things. “When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, LORD, will I seek.” (Ps 7:28) The most important thing to seek is God and his kingdom.
Some people are only looking to make a living. All they seek is their daily bread, and maybe a little more. They think they are too busy surviving in this world to seek God. The thing is, when that is all they seek, that is all they find. They get by. If they would seek more, however, they could have so much more.
And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind. For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things. But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you. (Lk 12:29-31)
Sometimes you find only what you are looking for. Sometimes it seems that God would give us more if we would just ask for more. Sometimes it seems that God is waiting for us to seek him, so he can give us more. God is just waiting for people to find him. Just look for him. He is there. You will find what you are looking for.