When we mention the word “desperation”, one could think it connects to something negative or unpleasant. American author Henry David Thoreau once said that “Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them.” Here, we may think he means that death comes with man still holding onto unfulfilled dreams and longings. And such is often the case, for to be desperate is to “have a great need or desire for something. Desperation is a craving, a longing. It is a thirst and an ache for an urgent need.
When it comes to the Christian life, desperation is essential to a growing and deepening faith, relationship with, and experience of God. It is a most positive condition. Those who have just begun a relationship with God may have this insatiable desire for more understanding and experience of God in his life. However, time has a way of desensitizing (numbing) the heart and mind. One can get cozy in the faith and practice of religiosity that spiritual matters start to feel ordinary, routinary, obligatory, or mundane.
The child of God must remain desperate; desperate for God’s companionship and desperate to keep getting to know His Person. There is always more to discover of God. There is always more to understand of His dealings with you and the world around you.
So how do we remain desperate for God? Here are 2 ways:
Long for His presence.
Indeed, we should firstly “seek the Giver, before the gifts.” In Psalm 42 we see the psalmist’s heart longing after God. He sings, “As the hart pants after the water brooks, so pants my soul after you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear before God?”
In Psalm 63:1, David sings, “You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water.”
Have you yearned for God as the body scorched with heat and exhaustion screams for water? Have you felt this need to search for God and to experience more of Him, especially in the midst of great trial or need? God is pleased with this kind of yearning. In fact, He desires it. Acts 17 says that God’s workings are “so that that they (man) should seek God, and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him. Yet he is actually not far from each one of us”.
Long for Him today and experience Him respond to you in a wonderful and satisfying way. Seek for His hand in your life. Be sensitive to how He is guiding you and working out the details of your life. These may not immediately be clear but sooner if not later, clarity comes to those who pay attention. Matthew 7 says that he who seeks will find that which He seeks for.
Long for His Word.
There is no growth and strength without God’s Word. You cannot grow in knowledge and experience of God without guidance and revelation from His very Words. Scriptures reveal who God is. In its pages we glimpse God’s person and character. In its pages we get insight into what His purposes are for His children.
Scriptures show us all the good things we should pursue and immerse ourselves in. From Scriptures we find wisdom to thrive in this life and enjoy it. From Scriptures we find out how to delight ourselves in God. We learn what pleases Him and we learn what brings lasting pleasure in our very lives.
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Long for His Word today. Feed from His Word and find nourishment. As you can hardly get by one day without food, don’t go a day without taking His Word in. Job 23:12 says, “I have kept the words of His mouth more than my necessary food.” 1 Peter 2:2 says, “Like newborn babies, you must crave pure spiritual milk so that you will grow into a full experience of salvation. Cry out for this nourishment.”