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Friday, December 21, 2012

Move through to move beyond

Enough:  adequate for the want or need; sufficient for the purpose or to satisfy desire.   Desire:  a longing or craving for something which brings satisfaction or enjoyment.  Have you been so desperate for something that absolutely nothing else enters your mind?  You just cannot turn your attention from whatever it is you long for, craving it with such intensity, nothing else will satisfy.  Wouldn't it be awesome if you could honestly say this about God?  He - the object of your longing or craving - would be the center of your focus so much that nothing else would satisfy!  I wonder how we get to the place where God becomes the object of our desire more than anything else in this world?

God—you’re my God!  I can’t get enough of you!  I’ve worked up such hunger and thirst for God, traveling across dry and weary deserts.  (Psalm 63:1 MSG)

David tells us the secret.  It comes in "working up a hunger and thirst for God".  Where is this hunger and thirst "worked up"?  Ummm...I warn you...you may want to stop reading now!  The hunger and thirst which brings God central in our lives comes in the "traveling across dry and weary deserts".  In the "dry" and "weary" places of life, desire is built - not for the "little bits" of God's presence, but for the "sufficiency" of his presence!

Now, since you have not stopped reading, let's look a little deeper at what David is saying, shall we?  It is in "movement" we find our hunger and thirst built - not in our stagnancy.  David points out it is as we are "travelling across" the dry or weary place we build a hunger and thirst.  Some of us get into the dry or weary place and just take up residence there!  No wonder we don't have our hearts changed!  We "wallow" instead of "travelling through".  Do you know what it means to wallow?  It means to roll in the dirt in hopes we will find refreshment!  Now, how silly is that?  If we were rhinoceros we might actually benefit from the "dirt bath", but dirt just doesn't have the same effect for us!  In fact, it clogs our pores, brings nasty zits which annoy and leave us pocked, and then it gives us a pretty rank smell!  So, I don't recommend "wallowing".  

Probably the definition of "wallowing" which comes closest to what I am think we do when we get into the dry and weary places is to move along, but with such clumsiness and slowness as to reflect our awkwardness with the place we find ourselves in.  We "move", but it is with no real purpose, no intensity. We just "flounder about" in our dryness.  David says we don't work up a thirst unless we are travelling "across".  In other words, from one side to the other! There is a destination in mind - out of the middle of the muddle we are in!  The only way to get out of the mess is to get to the other side of it!

It is in moving across we find the place of moving beyond.  But...to get across, we have to experience a lot along the way.  The dry place is often characterized by the "absence" of something.  We lack something which we need.  The absence builds or intensifies as we begin to "move across" in order to get "beyond".  If you have ever been thirsty, you might just have begun to sense the dryness of your lips, the pastiness of your tongue, or the like.  If you don't address the thirst, what happens?  The intensity of the thirst grows, doesn't it?  The awareness of the absence of the fluid your body craves begins to grow.  In travelling across the dry places in our lives, the intensity of what our spirit craves is growing.  We thirst for that which truly fulfills - not just a tiny taste, but the total immersion!

The movement is key - nothing intensifies thirst or hunger more than "using up" the resources we have at our disposal.  Sometimes God leads us into the dry or weary place to show us how little our "enough" really is!  He allows us to "use up" what resources we have in "reserve" within in order to show us how much more we really need!  The dry places make us aware of our little and his much!  So, rather than focus on the "place" we find ourselves, let's begin to focus on what we will discover in our movement to the "beyond" of this place!  In our movement, I know our hunger and thirst will be intensified, but it is in the discovery of how much we actually hunger and thirst that we come to the place of being opened to receive "more"!  Just sayin!