“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.”
This week we are exploring our longings and the aim of our hearts. There seems to be, in the teachings of the Bible and of Jesus in particular, an encouraging, not a discouraging, of longing after certain things.
While the last hundred years of Christianity has spent a lot of energy discouraging people from longing after certain things, I wonder if as a result we’ve lost the hunger and thirst for God that is actually supposed to drive us?
I’m not just talking about the cliche that says “the church is against too many things, that’s legalism, we need to talk about what we’re for.” There’s truth in there. But it falls short. We are created to long after. To hunger. To thirst. But this state of being – that feeling, knowing that there is something, someone who can uniquely fulfill you and you want it badly, has been so discouraged that we’ve lost it altogether.
I am reminded of a powerful C.S. Lewis quote on the matter:
“It would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”
So when Jesus tells us that we are blessed when we hunger and thirst after righteousness, it’s an invitation to long after him and find fulfillment. He is the embodiment of righteousness. He is the One and only who makes us righteous before the Father. When we hunger and thirst after Him, righteousness embodied, lived out, buried and resurrected, it is there we will find the truest life, and our deepest desires satisfied as we go on the adventure to which He calls us.
Don’t try to tame your hunger and thirst with empty calories that will only leave you sluggish and dead. Let your passionate longing burn wild for the life that is truly life. You will find it, and be satisfied.
Grace and Peace,