“Seek God in all things and we shall find God by our side.”*
So said Peter Claver. He was a Jesuit from Spain in the early 1600’s who was sent to Cartagena (now in Columbia).
While there he devoted himself to caring for thousands upon thousands of people who were being sent from west Africa to various places across the Atlantic Ocean as slaves. They would come into a slave port and be temporarily housed in horrid conditions. Claver would tend to their needs tirelessly. He brought medicine, food and hope—non-stop.
That background to Claver’s life provides some weighty context to his words: “Seek God in all things and we shall find God by our side.” He didn’t say them during an all-expenses paid vacation in Tahiti. He said it while vigorously tending to the substantial needs of slaves during a very dark chapter of human history.
When you’re feeling overwhelmed…
When you’re feeling defeated…
When you’re feeling rejected…
…seek God in all things and we shall find God by our side.
And he will guide us and sustain us as we seek to love him and our neighbours.
After his resurrection, Jesus looked upon his disciples and gave them what is famously called the Great Commission. His final words before the Gospel of Matthew comes to a close are these: “And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
And he is.
By Matthew Ruttan
*As quoted in: Hearts on Fire: Praying with Jesuits, ed. Michael Harter (St. Louis: The Institute of Jesuit Sources, 1993), 82.
–Bible quotes are from the NIV.