1 Corinthians 14:20-25
Have you ever gotten back from an activity, taken a drink of water, and thought that the water tasted so good that you couldn’t wait to have another sip, or gulp? No matter how the activity went—good or bad—you needed a drink. This could happen after a hike, shopping trip, hunting trip, road trip, exercising, or anything else. If you have a drink of pop, coffee, wine, or another beverage, it might quench the thirst for a bit, but then you might end up wanting something that will completely satisfy your thirst.
In the past year, there have been ISIS threats, hurricanes causing devastation, racial conflicts, shootings, sexuality conversations, conflicting views on abortions, presidential elections, mental health issues, friends moving away, friends losing babies… there have also been friends having babies, families adopting, weddings, people coming to Christ, awards being, starting new jobs, new friends, and many other news and conversations inundating our lives—some great news, and some disheartening. All this information is bombarding us through news, social media, conversations, thoughts, and with friends. It can be difficult wading through it all trying to figure out where to stand on the issues, what to think about the events, and how to respond if a response is necessary. It can weigh us down, distract us, motivate us, enlighten us, or make us feel very hopeless at times.
Today, consider David’s psalm: “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” (Psalm 63:1). David was pining for the Lord. He felt helpless and overwhelmed and frustrated with the conditions of the world around him. In our lives, we have do have joys, but we can also feel overwhelmed with everything else coming at us; we can easily get sucked into a vortex of worrying, stress, and taking on the pressure to solve everything. This verse, however, brings to light the longing for Christ to fulfill and help in distress “in a dry and parched land.”
When the psalmist felt like it couldn’t get any worse, he stopped to call on his God—Lord, give me strength, hold me, help me draw to you. The psalmist also reminds us: “I have seen you in the sanctuary and beheld your power and your glory” (Psalm 63:2). This tells the reader, and writer, that though there seems to be nothing good around, God is still a powerful and glorious God. God has done wonders, and God still holds all things. Then, the writer paints a beautiful picture of surrender: “because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you. I will praise you as long as I live, and in your name, I will lift up my hands” (Psalm 63:3).
When we praise God is not dictated by what is going on in our lives. But, we praise God with every bone in our body, and with our lips, every day because He is better than life. We are only satisfied in Him, so to Him we run and to Him we give glory and praise. Everything else will only worry us, temporarily fill us, or leave us feeling lost and overwhelmed. The writer shares the beauty of when we run, surrender, and accept Christ’s control: “I will be fully satisfied as with the richest of foods; with singing lips my mouth will praise you” (Psalm 63:5). We will not want, we will not worry, and we will not be consumed—He will fill us so that we feast no more on the unsatisfying events around us.
However, this does not mean that when we run to Christ it will be a light switch and everything will be fixed, events will work out how we want, or that the pain/suffering will go away and the injustice will be stopped. Rather, the writer calls us to daily, constant thinking of Christ in helping to get through the events that weigh us down. “On my bed I remember you; I think of you through the watches of the night. Because you are my help, I sing in the shadow of your wings. I cling to you; Your right hand upholds me” (Psalm 63:6-8). We and the writer run to Christ to support us when we receive disheartening news and joyous news. When we run to Christ, he will give us a reason to sing—that reason is Him, of course.
The psalmist goes on to state that Christ will handle things that are against us – people, events, and thoughts. This does not mean that we sit idly by while everything happens in the world, but it means that we do not need to become consumed by those situations.
The psalmist wraps up Psalm 63 with a beautiful picture of God giving voice to those who proclaim him and serve him while shutting the mouths of those who do not serve him and bring His name honor. But, it is Christ who does that voicing in us—we, in the meantime, are called to be his hands and his feet.
As you thirst in a dry and parched land for something to give life and hope instead of sadness, worry, and despair—run to Christ. Seek Him. As the psalmist states, “all who swear by God will glory in him” (Psalm 63:11). Relish in Him and keep surrendering your consuming thoughts to Him—because it is through every joy and every trial that He receives glory. Keep falling to your knees asking the Lord how you can be Him to a world that is dry and parched. Ask God to give you the strength to see His glory, as you thirst for Him. Pray that Christ gives you strength to lean and rest in Him in a broken world, and to not be shaken; all this, so that you may never be thirsty.