Hunger and thirst for God

WE need to see to it that we develop a real hunger and thirst for God to such an extent that we would really feel the corresponding urges. Our yearning for God should not just be a spiritual or intellectual affair.

It has to be felt, like we do when we hunger for food and thirst for water. It should filter down to our senses that would involve the corresponding organs of our body. Otherwise, that hunger and thirst for God will not last long, let alone, something that is of the abiding kind.

That is why it is good to go through some of the psalms that vividly express this need. Psalm 62 (63), for example, describes this need very well. The eleven verses that comprise it articulate how we should feel toward God. I believe it is worthwhile to go through that psalm slowly, savoring each word and the reality it expresses.

“You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you / I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you,” the psalm starts, giving us an idea of how we should feel in our relationship with God. We have to look for God with great desire, involving our whole being, and not just a token. In fact, our greatest desire, our strongest hunger and thirst should be for God alone. Everything else that we need will come in the proper order.

“I will be fully satisfied as with the richest of foods; with singing lips my mouth will praise you,” it continues, describing how we ought to feel when we would finally satisfy that hunger and thirst for God. Again, the satisfaction and sense of fulfilment should not just be of the spiritual kind. It has to be felt in our mouth and tongue. Again, unless we feel this satisfaction, our longing for God would not last long.

“On my bed I remember you; I think of you through the watches of the night, I sing in the shadow of your wings / I cling to you; your right hand upholds me.” These verses somehow tell us that our thoughts, memory and imagination should be filled with the burning desire to be with God. Otherwise, they will be filled with something else that definitely would not be proper to us.

The psalm also tells us that there should be a feeling of confidence and peace that in spite of whatever, we would be in safe hands. “Those who want to kill me will be destroyed; they will go down to the depths of the earth,” it says. This feeling of confidence and peace is important because if our desire for God does not have that effect, then it cannot be kept for long.

Again, it is good that we go through the words of the psalms to train especially our human faculties to have the proper attitude in our relation with God. Otherwise, they will just be at the mercy of passing sentiments, let alone, deceptive, disordinate and false feelings and perceptions.

Our relationship with God would be compromised even if we only manage to give some appearance of piety which many people have become good at. And nowadays, with all the many alluring distractions, it is imperative that our relationship with God is really strong. Our hunger and thirst for God should dominate all the other desires and yearnings we have in life.

As said earlier, it would be good if we can find ways to develop a deeply felt hunger and thirst for God. This, for sure, will not compromise our humanity, our naturalness, etc. On the contrary, it will purify, enrich and elevate our humanity to the supernatural life of God that is meant for us.

Yes, we are meant for God. We are nothing when we are not with God!