Deep Longings Satisfied
Deep Longings Satisfied
1 O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water. 2 So I have looked upon you in the sanctuary, beholding your power and glory. 3 Because your steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise you. 4 So I will bless you as long as I live; in your name I will lift up my hands. 5 My soul will be satisfied as with fat and rich food, and my mouth will praise you with joyful lips, 6 when I remember you upon my bed, and meditate on you in the watches of the night; 7 for you have been my help, and in the shadow of your wings I will sing for joy. 8 My soul clings to you…. (Psalm 63:1-8a ESV)
Cultivate a Longing for God
King David experienced failures and trials as a friend, husband, father, king, and as a man. Those difficult experiences and trials were like earthquakes in his life, breaking down the defensive walls of his heart and the glorified towers of his pride. Amid the ruins of his self-ambition, self-reliance, and self-gratification, stood a man in the wilderness of Judea who was fully satisfied with the presence of God.
God gave a clear warning to Israel about living with plenty, and I believe that it is counsel that we must heed too. 11b Beware that in your plenty you do not forget the LORD your God and disobey his commands, regulations, and decrees that I am giving you today. 12 For when you have become full and prosperous and have built fine homes to live in, 13 and when your flocks and herds have become very large and your silver and gold have multiplied along with everything else, be careful! 14 Do not become proud at that time and forget the LORD your God. (Deuteronomy 8:14 NLT)
For a season, David’s palace and treasure was stripped from him. He stood in the barren desert and found great satisfaction in God, his presence and promises. We can experience that satisfaction, too, but the choice is ours.
David prayed, O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you (63:1).
David longed for God with his body, soul, mind, and strength. When we come to such a level of thirst and hunger for God, he will surely refresh us and satisfy us.
To be fully satisfied by the Holy God, you have to be wholly dissatisfied with this world. David had come to that place.
Although it is possible, it is hard to come to this level of longing for God while we sit in palaces.
Drawing near to God and knowing his power and glory develops a deeper longing to know and experience him more fully. A longing for God doesn’t mysteriously appear; it is developed.
Knowing God’s love, purpose to praise, worship, and meditate on him (3-8)
3 Because your steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise you. 4 So I will bless you as long as I live; in your name I will lift up my hands. 5 My soul will be satisfied as with fat and rich food, and my mouth will praise you with joyful lips, 6 when I remember you upon my bed, and meditate on you in the watches of the night; 7 for you have been my help, and in the shadow of your wings I will sing for joy. 8 My soul clings to you….
Because [God’s] steadfast love is better than life, David purposefully responded in the ways underlined in the text.
Nothing was greater to David than knowing God’s steadfast love (loyal covenant love), so no longing of life was greater than his longing for God and his presence. This is the attitude of a blessed and satisfied person.
The response to God’s loyal love is to:
- Praise him
- Bless him
- Lift up hands to him
- To use our mouths and lips to praise him
- To remember him and meditate on him in the bed
- To sing joyfully
- To cling to him with our souls
Because David gave himself completely in worship to God, God gave what belonged to him, fully satisfying David’s soul.
There is a measure of the satisfying goodness of God that is only experienced by those who know his steadfast love and worship him expressly.