Many of us have read or heard the beginning of Psalm 42,
“As the deer pants for streams of water,
so my soul pants for you, my God.
2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.
When can I go and meet with God?”
Many have likely felt like this, but the fact is most of us have never been as bad off as the Psalmist was here. He records that his tears are his food. He also states that many taunt him by asking him “where is your God?” The Psalmist is in a very sad state.
Do we need to be as oppressed as the Psalmist was to feel the heart of this Psalm? I don’t believe so, but I do believe that we should seek to truly know what it means to yearn for God. I half wonder if we haven’t lost the ability to long for something and to continue pursuit of it if we find that it is not readily had. Do we still possess the ability to yearn?
So often now I see people that may well have begun by yearning, but in the end they begin to substitute other things for God. It is shocking how many Christians find their safety in worldly things. Is God not capable of protecting us? It is saddening to see so many lead astray by false hope. Can we not stay awake for just a little while? God is certainly always there, but He is not at our beck and call.
So how do we yearn? The answer is that we must first let go of the sense that we can make God do anything. The second is that we must humbly and patiently lay our selves at the feet of King Jesus. We must trust that He is gracious, and that He loves us. Then we pray. We must repeat this often, letting go of self and selfishness, and holding firm to the Hope with have in Christ. If we notice, this is the very thing the Psalmist did. He rested in the Hope that only God can give.
Until next time, may God bless you with a spirit of yearning for Him and His righteousness.
3 thoughts on “Yearning for God: A reflection on Psalm 42”
I love that psalm. Well needed Read, thank you.
Great thought. I’m drawn to the hunger to know God. I want more. I want to take in all of Him until I can’t handle any more. I want to live hungry and thirsty for Him.
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