“As the deer longs for streams of water, so I long for you, O God.”
Psalms 42:1 NLT
Do you long for the LORD? Do you crave His presence? Are you hungry for the food from His table? Is your soul thirsty for the water of Life? We fill our lives with so many things. We try to satisfy the hunger and thirst of the inner man with so many outer things.
• We try material possessions (houses, cars, clothes, boats, ATVs, tools, etc).
• We try monetary success (money chasing). Some work long hours to have more. Some play the lottery, go to casinos, or gamble in other ways, just to try to win big. If we could just have enough money.
• We try educational pursuits. If we could only get enough knowledge. "Knowledge is power" they say.
• We try illicit relationships. We think we can somehow "find" the "right" person and they will fulfill us.
• We try substances (alcohol, prescription drugs, illegal drugs). Perhaps they will take away our pain and relieve us of our burdens.
• We try fame. If only we were famous or popular, everyone would like us.
In all of these things, we find ourselves unfulfilled, unsatisfied, disappointed, depressed, and discouraged.
Luxuries may make us comfortable physically but they can never comfort the spirit and soul spiritually. Money may buy a house, but it cannot buy a home. Money may buy a lover, but it cannot buy love. Money may buy placement in a university, but it cannot buy a good education. Education may afford us position and prominence, but it cannot afford us peace. Lust for the opposite sex may arouse our physical passions, but it's pleasure is short and it leaves us lonely and hurting. We spend our lives trying to get over the pain of relationships gone bad. None of these things bring deep down satisfaction. The caverns of our soul yet cry out for something. We turn to things that will either sedate or energize us. We expose our bodies to substances that will somehow numb the pain or take us to a false state of ecstasy. We try to drown our troubles. When the bottle is empty and the trip is ended, the troubles are only magnified. The cycle becomes vicious. At this point I believe we need to understand that there is a critical pandemic occurring right before our very eyes. America comprises only 4 percent of the worlds population but consumes over 90 percent of the worlds opiates. That is stunning!! Every day, in every county in this nation, someone is dying from drug overdose. Alcohol consumption is out of control. Marriages are being destroyed, children neglected and abused, spouses battered and beaten, crime is skyrocketing, and many other social ills are plaguing us because of our substance abuse. The substances of this fallen world ruin your body, rot your brain, destroy your character, and dishonor God. Our desire for fame and fortune drives people to desperate measures. We sell our souls to the devil in order to gain this world. There is only one place our spirit can call home and our soul can find rest. We must sell out to the LORD! There, and only there, will we find the deep down satisfaction that we truly long for. “Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”” Matthew 11:28-30 NLT Are you thirsty? Come to the well! “Is anyone thirsty? Come and drink— even if you have no money! Come, take your choice of wine or milk— it’s all free! Why spend your money on food that does not give you strength? Why pay for food that does you no good? Listen to me, and you will eat what is good. You will enjoy the finest food.” Isaiah 55:1-2 NLT God's food and wine will nurture you, strengthen you, make you sober, and give you clarity in life. “On the last day, the climax of the festival, Jesus stood and shouted to the crowds, “Anyone who is thirsty may come to me!” John 7:37 NLT Turn away from the alluring deception of this world and surrender it all to Jesus. Does your soul hunger and thirst for Jesus like the deer does for the water brook?
Rev. Curtis Norris