Listen: Chris Witts presents Morning Devotions.
Gerald May writes in his book The Dark Night of the Soul:
For all of us there are moments of dawning awareness, little cracks in our armour that reveal glimpses of our deeper longing…Maybe we’ve been grasping for good things when what we’ve really desired, is the Creator of all good things.
I think this is an excellent thought. Somehow, in all our longings, we are searching for a loving God. Some people refer to it as ‘spiritual hunger’. It may be your job—or perhaps your marriage is missing something. Maybe your whole life feels empty! Deep inside you know there must be more. Are you longing for more, but not sure what the ’more’ is?
- What do you need?
- What do you long for?
- What are you looking for that you cannot find?
- What void is there that is not being filled?
- Do you think it can be met by another human being?
Do you think that if you only had the right person, the right relationship—someone you could be secure with; someone who wouldn’t fail you or abandon you; someone who could provide for you—that things would be different? Life is a huge part of what we’re about. Being debt free, being wealthy even, is pointless if you don’t have life.
Looking for Life in the Wrong Places
People look for life in many things: wealth, relationships, status, reputation, image.
When people don’t have life some try to escape it, leaving a trail of addiction and brokenness. Every single person has in himself a longing for God, his creator. That is why we see people searching for the truth everywhere. The problem is they are searching in the wrong places.
If we’re honest, we have to admit there’s an ache in our souls for something more. I am fond of quoting C.S. Lewis, who famously said:
If we find ourselves with a desire that nothing in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that we were made for another world.
David, while King of Israel and probably one of the wealthiest people on earth, wrote to God that “my soul thirsts for you, my body longs for you…your love is better than life…my soul will be satisfied as with the richest of foods” (Psalm 63).
Jesus Christ is the only one who can give you the perfect relationship you’re looking for. He is always there. He always has the answers. Not anything nor anyone can ever drive him away. Your personality, your behaviour, your response will never alter who Jesus is or what he has promised. He is God; he cannot change.
We live in a world that is hungry for so many things. We see people that are hungry for fame, position, power and riches. But God is always looking for people who are hungry for him. Jesus said, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.” (John 6:35 – NKJV)
A Belief in Something Higher Is in Our Nature
Carl Jung, one of the fathers of modern psychology, said, “We are all born to believe.” Bruce Hood, professor of Developmental Psychology at Bristol University agrees with him, claiming that supernatural beliefs are hard-wired into our brains from birth and that religions are therefore tapping into a powerful psychological reality.
His work is supported by other researchers who have found evidence linking religious feelings and experience to particular regions of the brain. The findings challenge atheists such as Richard Dawkins, who has long argued that religious beliefs result from poor education and childhood ‘indoctrination’.
But the best explanation for this restless desire for something bigger than ourselves comes from the Bible which simply says, God has put eternity in our hearts (Ecclesiastes 3:11 – NKJV)—meaning we are hard-wired to believe, despite how much we may deny it.
In a novel by H. G. Wells, a young girl repudiates, revolts against everything, but cries out, “Yet we’ve got to devote ourselves to something. We’re made that way.”
If your happiness is wrapped up in pleasing God—in doing his will, in serving his purposes—then no person, except you, can take your happiness away.
Bob Smith, a colleague of mine, was giving a talk on the radio and shared this:
A chaplain friend of mine told me about a group of young soldiers he had for a two-day character guidance course. When the question of God came up they all dismissed belief of any kind; except for one. He’d been a boundary rider in Central Queensland before joining the army and had already regaled the group in hilarious language about his exploits in the bush, drinking bouts, brawls and babies born to many girls. But he came right out and said: Wait on, you blokes. Sometimes, as I used to lie under the stars at night, I’d look up; hold my hand before my face and say, there’s more to me than just blood and bone. Do any of you blokes have thoughts like that?
These Scriptures share this feeling:
- “You satisfy the desires of all your worshipers, and you come to save them when they ask for help” (Psalm 145:19 – CEV)
- “Let your love satisfy all our needs. Then we can celebrate and be glad..” (Psalm 90:14 – CEV)
- “My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God?” (Psalm 42:2 – NIV)
Having a life-purpose statement is a tremendous idea. Spend time alone with God and ask what your purpose here on this earth is all about. I’m sure he will reveal that to you.