Hungry (conclusion): The Homesick Soul

photo credit: Thomas Leuthard via photopin cc
We are now at the close of Jesus' totally weird statement, "Blessed are those who hunger and thirst..." Now we have to ask the question, hunger and thirst after what? Jesus doesn't just say blessed are those who hunger and thirst. I mean, that's a good thing in and of itself but what are we meant to hunger and thirst after? I wonder, does he say, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst after money”? I hope not. “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst after a boyfriend or girlfriend.” He doesn’t say that either. What about fame, success, knowledge, religion, reputation, good health? No. Good as those things may be he doesn't mention any of them. What he actually says is, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst after righteousness.

Now what is righteousness? There are a lot of definitions that people would give for this word but the main idea behind righteousness is to be in a right relationship with God. That's what our souls craves for. That's what our hearts thirst after. We think we want more money, but what we really want is to be reconciled to God. We think we want more sex but what we really crave deep in our hearts is to know him intimately. As a favorite preacher of mine once said, "You and I came out of the hands of God and we will never be satisfied until we return."[1] The words of Jesus are clear and simple: “Happy are those who are craving to be in a right relationship with God. Happy are those who painfully thirst after a right relationship with God.” 

Does that describe you ? Do you crave to be in a right relationship with God? Do you thirst to be right with him? You may be tempted to say no. You may be inclined to say that you have no interest in God. That all you want is romance, reputation, success, fame, and material possessions. You may deny your hunger for God and say you find satisfaction in the sinful escapades you enjoy at the casino on Friday nights. But as G. K. Chesterton once said,  "Every man who knocks on the door of a brothel is looking for God." This is why none of that other stuff has brought you satisfaction. Its not what you really want. God. That's what you crave. Fight it as you may, deny it and rebuke it but you can't change the truth. You want to be in his arms where you belong. Your soul is homesick. You want to go home. 

But it would only be half the story to say that you alone are hungry and thirsty. The truth is someone else is just as, if not even more, hungry than you are. God hungers after you as well. He thirsts after you. “For God so loved the world that he gave… He gave his only begotten son…” Look at him there on the cross! The bread of life died hungry. Look at him there on the cross! The living water said, “I thirst.”[2] He went to the cross because He craves and thirsts after a relationship with us. As David Crowder says, "oh, how He loves us..."[3]

Matthew 5:6 ends with a promise. “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.” The Greek word filled literally means “to satisfy in full.” You see, no earthly source can satisfy. It takes something alien. Extraterrestrial. Other-worldly. C.S Lewis put it well when he said, “If I find in myself desires which nothing in this world can satisfy, the only logical explanation is that I was made for another world.” Do you want to satisfy your hunger and quench your thirst? It’s found in a relationship with God. If you don’t have a relationship with God don’t close this page without asking Him to come into your life. If you long to be closer to God this morning don’t run off until you have asked God to draw you near. The message is clear and simple:
“Happy are those who crave and painfully thirst after a right relationship with God for they will be filled to satisfaction."

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[1] Alejandro Bullon
[2] I heard this concept years ago from a preacher whose name I cant even remember. All I remember is that he was a simple man from South America but the words "The bread of life died hungry... the living water said, 'I thirst.'" were so powerful I never forgot them.
[3] David Crowder. How He Loves, song lyrics.


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