As the deer pants for water, so my soul longs for you, oh God. – Psalm 42
I’m sure we’ve all been in situations where a glass of cold water becomes the most important thought in our mind. A long hot summers day, after a run or workout, or after a hard day’s work. Whatever the reason, the opening phrase of the quote above is quite evocative. Not only will the water quench our thirst, but it is also essential to our bodies in order to sustain life. As disciples of Christ our very being should cry out in need for God, as our bodies crave water.
Life can become extremely busy, and world and local situations can distract us; problems can weigh us down, but in all this our first thought should be of God. When we are thirsty, we make time to drink, and in our lives we should also make time to spend with God.
It is in spending time with God that we can make sense of the confusing; it is in spending time with God that we can learn the right answers to the problems of the world; and it is in spending time with God that we can find an oasis of calm in our busy lives.
As Christians we spend much time talking of God, of proclaiming God’s will for others and even proclaiming His judgement on others. But is He really our hearts desire? Does our soul really long for Him?
We would not dream of going one whole day without taking water but how often do we let one whole day go without sitting with God and listening to His will for us? When we love another person, partner, parent, child, grandchild, whoever it might be, we long to spend time with them. So it should be with God. We should long to spend time with Him everyday – we should become anxious if something holds us back.
If life is to make any sense and if our faith is to make any sense for us, the words of the hymn must be true for us.
You, O lord, are my hearts desire
and I long to worship you.