The soul was made to hunger and thirst for satisfaction. There’s nothing wrong with human longing. It was made to be in deep longing, but this deep longing was intended for God, for relationship with God, for the worship of God, for service to God, for the glory of God and the enjoyment of Him forever. The soul longs and it is the human condition that for most human beings the soul will long without rest, hunger without satisfaction, thirst without drink. But there are circumstances whereby that longing is pricked and brought to the surface: a nation may feel it collectively, as we have this week due to the horrific events in Boston – which is a story fierce with terror but also fierce with the mercy of God, and we should remember that.
It may be the success of a friend that awakens that longing for satisfaction, it may be the joy of a neighbor’s healthy marriage that makes you feel alone. It may be the experience of suffering, or of the suffering of your children if you have them that may also awaken that longing.
The soul constantly hungers and thirsts. Psalm 63 teaches us that the truest satisfaction of the soul’s longing can only be found in God, which is both an helpful teaching and a stinging corrective. There are signs of unmet longing, hunger and thirst in the disasters that fall us as a people, moment without end. It should cause us to examine ourselves: are we seeking our satisfaction from God or are we like so many others, like the sort of person that must burn not only themselves to be full but everyone around them. Are we so different? Are we drinking from the same well as the person that put violence to so many men, women and children? Or are we willing to say with David that God’s “steadfast love is better than life”?
It is the satisfaction of humanity’s deepest hunger and thirst that Jesus’ life and vicarious death accomplished. What is left is for you and for me to feast.