“If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world.” – C.S. Lewis
“You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and our heart is restless until it rests in you.” – Saint Augustine
We were all born with a unquenchable thirst, an insatiable appetite.
We all desired something that could appease our self-esteem and bring safety and security and satisfaction.
We were born thirsty, and so we began to drink from the cup the world provided. We drowned ourselves in the temporary pleasures of life, gorging ourselves on sex, money, fame, success, drinking ourselves drunk on shifting shadows.
We lost our minds, our desires, our happiness to the fleeting pleasures of this life, working for grades and people and green pieces of paper that could never truly fill the gaping hole within our hearts.
The more we drank, the more we felt the emptiness inside and continued drinking, consuming the world’s food to conceal our growing hunger. At the same time, our appetite changed, complied, conformed, until all we wanted, all we desired were these temporary pleasures.
We began to lose our taste for the supernatural, in the same way a Starbucks-only coffee drinker can never truly appreciate anything else. Our taste became cheapened by the trinkets of earth. We indulged ourselves in these corporeal amusements, looking only to the world for a satisfaction it could not provide.
The truth is, we fell for trash.
And we still do. In our limited vision, we fail to keep in mind the eternal weight of glory that awaits and run after carnal pleasures. We trade away the spiritual blessings God provides and the comfort and strength that come from heaven for the gaudy baubles of this earth.
We fall head over heels for little pleasures that keep us entertained one second and leave us ravenous for more.
I am so guilty of pursuing soap bubbles. So often I lose sight of God’s amazing grace and look to people for security, grades and plastic trophies for satisfaction. And while temporarily these things hold up under my weight and dependence, eventually they give in. Over the last few months, I’ve realized that all too often, I place my hope and security and joy on these temporary things.
I try to find rest and satisfaction in what this world provides, instead of looking to the only One who can satisfy the ache within.
King Solomon had it all. He had fame, wealth, success, women. He had everything the world could offer at his command, and yet he realized that life was empty without God.
In the book of Ecclesiastes, Solomon describes the futile pursuit of worldly pleasures. His search to find happiness and fulfillment in the world resulted in vanity, and he was left thirsty, restless, desperate. He was a man who had pursued soap bubbles and found them lacking.
Yet, at the end of the book, Solomon cries out a warning to remember our Creator, to fear God and keep His commandments. Though he experienced everything this world could offer, Solomon understood satisfaction and security come from heaven and a healthy fear of the Lord, not from temporary pleasures.
Christ has not just left us restless and searching.
Though this world can never truly quench our thirst, there is a Fountain overflowing with living water that we are invited to partake. A Fountain that can wash away our sins and satisfy our longings once and for all in its springs of living water.
I guess that’s why God created our thirst in the first place, so our search for fulfillment can eventually lead us to Him.
He made us thirsty to point us heavenward in order that on earth, we can not only enjoy that Fountain, but also share that living water with others. To pour out the blessings of His grace and point others to Christ for satisfaction and security.
Not only do we have this hope here on earth, but we also have the hope of heaven, where we will no longer feel like aliens and pilgrims on a journey, but where we will finally be home.
That quote from C.S. Lewis sums this up perfectly. This world cannot satisfy our desires, because quite frankly, this world is not our home. We were created for another world, and nothing on earth can ever bring complete fulfillment.
Yet this desperate search for water directs our gaze upwards to a place of physical, emotional, and spiritual satisfaction. We were created for the supernatural, and while the carnal cannot satisfy, the eternal can.
This world is full of mirages, and we run to shimmering shadows of water but find them deceiving. We are weary, weary in our unending search for fulfillment, weary in running after soap bubbles. Yet Christ invites us to drink at His feet, to drink and drink our fill in the presences of His grace and lovingkindness.
The choice is up to us.
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