I first heard this song “God Chaser”, by David and Nicole Binion, as a teenager. In the mid-90s, an era of kippers, nightclubbing and emergent R&B music, this song crept onto my radar. I was an eager adolescent at the time, firey about God and passionate about worshipping him.
I listened to the lyrics of this song and went, “Wow!” Inspired by the story in Song of Songs 3:1-5, this song describes the efforts of the love-struck individual to find God or to “chase” after him. This song was born out a time of re-awakening in the church in the 90s. It is an American song but here in Australia God was doing something too.
I was part of a youth group at the time that had experienced a kind of spiritual wake-up call. A prophet had visited and told us that youth could serve God powerfully, without waiting to be all grown up. It was the first time we had ever considered such a thing.
So wait we did not. We took God at his word and started spreading our wings, spiritually speaking. We started praying in tongues. We started praying for one another, then for the church, then for Australia. We began prophesying. We loved worshipping God and would get lost in worship for hours. We started writing songs together and recording them.
We went on outreaches – local missions, I suppose you’d call them – and saw God do some pretty amazing things. Things that make your jaw drop. Things that make you ask, “Why would God do that for us? We’re just a bunch of kids.” And it made us thirsty for more.
Into the midst of this dropped the “God Chaser” song. It followed Tommy Tenney’s revival book of the same name. The book challenged the status quo of the church and exhorted Christians to stop seeking after stuff – services, programs, blessings – and to become captivated with God and God alone.
I believe this song captures the spirit of the book. The song is a heartfelt cry to God to be one with him, beyond all others and other things. It is a cry born not of guilt or obligation but love-drunkenness. It is a lover’s desperate desire to be with the object of their adoration.
A song of worship, it also comes from a place of repentance. It names things that often get in the way of us chasing after God: pride, comfort, shame, treasures. It decries these things in order to be with God, the central focus of our love.
Being a “God Chaser” is countercultural in today’s society. We are encouraged by the world to seek our own comfort first, to believe in ourselves, to hoard up treasures for later. A God Chaser, in contrast, will cast all these things aside in a moment to follow after Christ. It seems illogical; insane, even. But many have said the same about love.
Years on from first hearing this song, I am now in my 30s and it still stirs something in me. Yes, the music is from the 90s (think “classic” rather than “ancient”), but the words are timeless. Let us cast aside the idols of contemporary society – narcissism, apathy, comfort and spectator Christianity – and join with the lyrics of this song in saying:
“I will chase after you O God,
Your love has captured my heart,
My soul is in hot pursuit of you;
I’m a God Chaser.”