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Monday, August 8, 2011

Longing for...

Today I'm reading Psalm 42:7-8,

Deep calls unto deep at the roar of your waterspouts. All the whitecaps on your waves have swept over me. The Lord commands his mercy during the day, and at night his song is with me – a prayer to the God of my life.

The great 17th century Christian philosopher and mathematician, Blaise Pascal, wrote this: "There was once in man a true happiness of which ow remain to hi only the mark and empty trace which he in vain tries to fill from all his surroundings, seeking from things absent the help he does not obtain in things present. But these are all inadequate, because the infinite abyss can only be filled by an infinite and immutable object, that is to say only by God Himself." (Pensées)

It is from Blaise Pascal that people got the expression that we are all created with a God-shaped vacuum in our hearts that only God can fill. We are all created with a longing. A desire that goes all the way back to the closed entrance to the Garden of Eden. A longing for God. A longing for love. A longing for significance, purpose and hope. We are all longing for a divine fulfillment.

And as Christians we experience (if we're honest) that even if we know God, and know his love and forgiveness - we still have longings that his presence helps us to cope with, but the pangs of longing are still there. His daily presence makes a difference but we still have the presence of sin in our hearts and that won't go away until we are fully transformed when we are in his eternal presence.

But how much better to face those longings with God than without him! In fact, I don't see how people make without the Lord. He does constantly seek us out to offer his strength and protection.

One translation of Psalm 42:7 uses the word "waterspouts" instead of "waterfalls." A waterspout is a tornado out on the ocean. As wind gains speed over the ocean the air swirls into a vortex and moves upward carrying tons of water with it. Huge waterspouts have been measured to rise 18,000 feet high. You can picture a cosmic hand reaching down from heaven to touch you and draw you up to God. "God is continually calling to that deep place within the human heart as he seeks to manifest Himself to those He loves."(S. J. Hill)

We do find our heart's home in Christ. Imperfectly in this world, but with enough grace to see us through.

Today's prayer: "Father, I long for and want to experience the depths of Your heart. Spirit of God, do for me what only You can do. take the scales off of my mind and my eyes, Free my heart to recognize You as the divine Romancer. help me to recognize Your fingerprints in my life. I ask that You awaken my heart to get back in touch with my God-placed feelings, passions and desires for a divine adventure and romance with you. Captivate me, lord, that I may run after You. Take away the fatigue and boredom and replace it with a holy passion for you. Let me experience the fullness of your love - which goes beyond height, depth, and length - unitl I am fully alive in you. In Jesus' name. Amen." (S. J. Hill)


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