Psalm 42:1 - Longing and Thirsty for God.
Psalm 42:1 - Longing and Thirsty for God.
Psalm 42:1 (NCV) As a deer thirsts for streams of water, so I
thirst for you, God.
As the life of a deer depends upon water, so our lives depend
upon God. Those who seek him and long to understand him find
never-ending life. Feeling separated from God, this psalmist wouldn't rest
until he restored his relationship with God because he knew that his
very life depended on it. [Life Application SB]
The point here is that people are given a spiritual nature which
leads them to seek God. Despite philosophical and atheistic claims to
the contrary, the human being is by nature religious. Particularly
in times of trouble we search for the higher Power who can deliver
us. In Jesus Christ we find the fulfillment of our longing for God.
The presence of God is a fact of life. St. Paul rightly said of
God, "in Him we live, and move, and have our being." Jesus said, "the
kingdom of God is within you." we may, by defying the purpose of God,
insulate ourselves from that presence. We may, by unrepented sin, cut off
the sense of God because we are clouded by a sense of guilt. We may,
through no fault of our own, be unable to sense the God who is all about
us. But the fact remains that He is with us all the time. J. B.
When God created us in the beginning, He designed us to have
a relationship with Him. This means that deep within our being is
a thirst for God which will not go away. It can be ignored,
disguised, misunderstood, wrongly labeled, or submerged underneath a wealth
of activity, but it will not disappear. And for good reason. We
were designed to enjoy something better than this world can give us,
particularly in the sphere of relationships. No human relationship can
satisfy in the way that a relationship with God does.
This deep thirst for God that resides within us makes us
dependent on God for satisfaction, and that is something our sinful human
nature deeply resents. You see, due to Adam and Eve's sin in the garden
of Eden, we have all been left a legacy called "Do It Yourself."
There is something within every single one of us that wants to take
charge and have a hand in bringing about our own salvation. So here is
the problem: facing the fact realistically that we inwardly thirst
after God puts us in touch with a level of helplessness from which our
sinful human nature shrinks. It reinforces the conviction that we are
dependent on someone outside of ourselves for satisfaction. And that is
something we don't care to acknowledge. [Every Day With Jesus Bible with
Selwyn Hughes devotional re Psa. 42:1 and Dan. 5:23]
A human being can go without food for about thirty to forty
days, but he or she can go only about three days without water.
Extreme thirst will put you on a single-minded hunt for water. That
makes thirst a good word for describing deep cravings, doesn't it?
In Psalm 42 we see a person thirsting for God, craving his
presence, and still feeling alone or even abandoned by him. This person
has longed for God's presence and found no ready source of relief.
Do you ever feel alone in your faith? There come times in
life when we thirst for God, weep for his help, or even endure
ridicule for our faith while waiting for him to answer our prayers (Psalm
42:1-3).We want desperately to feel God's presence or to have some other
tangible sign of his help and support. Times like these can lead to
depression and discouragement for any Christian.
The writer of Psalm 42 discovered a remedy for these
spiritually dry times. He remembered God's great blessings on his life. He
realized that although God seemed silent, he was there and was worthy to
be praised (42:4-5). He soaked in God's beautiful creation (42:6).
He realized that he was never adrift from God's love (42:7-8). He
faithfully expected God to act (42:11). [The One Year Through the Bible
Devotional by Dave Veerman re Psa. 42:1-6]
The writer of this psalm was feeling low. He wondered, Where
are you, God? Have you forgotten me? Yet somehow he was able to
remember what God had done for him, and somehow he was able to praise God
in the dark times.
We all face times of discouragement, times when we wonder if
God is really there. Some of us even face extended periods of
depression. When you feel yourself slipping into the zone of doubt, one
antidote is praise--remembering God's goodness to you. Read the Bible to
recall what God has done for others in the past. If you have kept a
journal of your Christian walk, review your own personal record of God's
answered prayer in your life.
Just as a deer depends upon water for life, so we believers
depend upon God for spiritual life. When you begin to feel separated
from God or wonder if he cares about your situation, take advantage
of the psalmist's "antidepressant": praise. Think about how much
God blesses you and takes care of you day by day. Dwell upon his
goodness and mercy. You'll be amazed by what happens when you start
praising instead of doubting. [The One Year Bible for New Believers]
Sometimes we long to be rescued. Or healed. Or provided for.
And sometimes we simply long for God. We recognize our need, even
when we've been fully satisfied with the best the world has to offer.
Money, possessions, status, recognition, accomplishments, and even
meaningful human relationships aren't enough. Virtually everyone, no matter
how successful, has asked the question, "Is this all there is?" We
have deeper needs than we know how to satisfy.
So we thirst. Sometimes we can't put a finger on what we're
thirsting for, but we know it's beyond our own resources. If we're
spiritually minded, we realize that we're thirsting for God Himself, longing
for the one our hearts were designed to connect with. And it's more
than just a connection we desire. It's a deep, meaningful, lasting
relationship that goes beyond superficial interaction. We need two-way
communication, shared thoughts and dreams, a bond that can't be broken. We need
to be known at the deepest level and embraced there.
God designed us with this thirst for a reason. It's what
drives us closer to Him. Many give up the quest, thinking that if God
hasn't shown Himself more fully, He can't be more fully known. But that
isn't true. We hear Him by longing for Him. His voice resonates within
us when we have decided He is more important to us than anything
Never forget: The ability to hear God is not a matter of
technique; it's a matter of desire. Yes, there are ways to listen,
attitudes that position us to hear, and perspectives that put His words in
the right light. But before all that is the thirst. If it's strong
enough, we won't stop listening, even if hearing is difficult. We will
long for streams of water until we find them.
Lord, satisfy this quest. My relentless thirst is for You.
Quench it with gushing streams of Your wisdom and inspiration. Let Your
words fulfill my deepest desires. [The One Year Hearing His Voice
Devotional by Chris Tiegreen]
Seek My face and you will find all that you have longed for.
The deepest yearnings of your heart are for intimacy with Me. I
know, because I designed you to desire Me. Do not feel guilty about
taking time to be still in My Presence. You are simply responding to
the tugs of divinity within you. I made you in My image, and I hid
heaven in your heart. Your yearning for Me is a form of homesickness:
longing for your true home in heaven.
Do not be afraid to be different from other people. The path
I have called you to travel is exquisitely right for you. The more
closely you follow My leading the more fully I can develop your gifts.
To follow Me wholeheartedly, you must relinquish your desire to
please other people. However, your closeness to Me will bless others by
enabling you to shine brightly in this dark world. (Psa. 42:1, 2; 34:5;
Phi. 2:15) [Jesus Calling by Sarah Young]
"From Troubled Teen to Teacher of the Year" read the headline
when I was inducted into the National Teachers Hall of Fame along
with four other teachers. Who would have believed that a suicidal,
two-hundred-fifty-pound, high school dropout could lose a hundred pounds and then turn
around and become a successful teacher who helps troubled teens of the
next generation? My own high school English teacher believed that,
and because of her faith, I placed my faith in Christ.
Psalm 42 describes my anxious, thirsty soul when I was trying
to fulfill the desires of my heart by stuffing my feelings with
food, alcohol, drugs, relationships, and whatever else could give me a
temporary high. I never want to forget my past hopeless feelings, for I
have come to believe that where we have been hurt the most is where
God can use us to help others--that what the enemy meant for harm,
God will use for good. Our true joy in life is to lead others to the
Living Water. Only Christ satisfies the deepest recesses of our parched
souls. In him, we thirst no more!
Dr. Debra Peppers, a retired English teacher, is an inductee
in the National Teachers Hall of Fame, a university instructor, an
Emmy Award-winning playwright, and a radio and television host. [The
One Year Bible Live Verse Devotional]
Where is God when we're in the emergency room with a severely
injured loved one? Where was God in the bombing of the Murrah Federal
Building in Oklahoma City in 1995? Where was God in the terrorist attacks
of September 11, 2001? When trouble or tragedy strikes, we long for
God, the living God. Who can tell us where God is? His Word tells us
over and over: he is in the one who visits those in prison; he is in
those who give food to the hungry; he is in the comfort of a loving
arm extended around those who are hurting. He is in the prayers of a
mother for her sick child. He is in the rescuers who work to save lives
and in the missionaries who leave family and friends and personal
comforts to share the gospel with those in darkness. He is demonstrated
best, though, at the Cross, where he gave his only Son, Jesus Christ,
for our sakes that we might have hope for this life and for
LORD, I praise you that you are Emmanuel - God with us - in
everything we experience as we walk through this broken, hurting world.
Help me to be your hands and feet today, your words of comfort and
encouragement to those who need to know "where you are" in their times of deep
need. [Praying Through The Bible By Fuller re Psa. 42:1-3, 11]
LINK FOR FURTHER STUDY ON THIS PASSAGE:
LINKS WORTH CHECKING OUT:
Seeking God Video Clip: http://vimeo.com/31489782
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