Bible Society of South Africa

The deeper thirst - 6 June 2024

By Ewald Schmidt

Bible text(s)

6Happy are those whose greatest desire is to do what God requires;

God will satisfy them fully!

Matthew 5:6GNBOpen in Bible reader

The world outside of God’s kingdom is a dark place. So much anger, hatred and violence run rampant in many communities. Additionally, most of the darkness comes from human desires and urges.

Every one of us may recall times in our lives when we stepped outside the bounds of the will of God, where we got hurt. Outside the will of God we are outside of his protection. Yet, how will we know what is right or wrong? God has given us his Word, the Bible, to teach us his ways. The Holy Spirit teaches us what the truth is and strengthens us in order to obey God and overcome temptation. And the Lord has created us with a conscience to help us to know instinctively what the right thing is to do as well.

When we are confronted by the darkness of this world, then the Word, the Spirit, and our conscience cry out, “It does not have to be this way! There is a better alternative!”

The children of God have a yearning for a world where the love of Christ conquers all. When we hunger and thirst for righteousness, we wholeheartedly seek a world that is right with God. God is love, the Apostle John teaches us in 1 John 4:8.

We were created in the image of God. We were created to love God, and each other. The night before he was crucified, Jesus commanded his church: “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” (John 13:34) Love honours God. Love builds up my fellow man. Love has the power to heal this world.

In the broadest sense nearly two billion people in the world identify as Christians. What would this world be like if every one of the two billion really heeded this message of Christ, and loved one another as Christ has loved us? How different could this world be if we placed other people’s needs before our own, the way that Jesus had shown us?

Jesus tells of a world where people hunger and thirst for the righteousness of God; a world where love conquers the hatred and violence among us. Such a world seems impossible today considering the madness of our time. But just imagine – what if it were possible? This is the world that God desires: a world filled with his love. It has to start somewhere. Why not with us? Our hunger and thirst for righteousness leads us to pray, “Let your kingdom come, let your will be done …” When we pray this part of the Lord’s Prayer, we also give our fealty. Let it start with me.

When this desire for a new world is as strong as our physical hunger and thirst, then we will pray, we will change our own behaviour towards others, and we will be part of God’s solution to the problems of this world. We will be satisfied.

Prayer: Lord, you have changed my life with your love. You have forgiven me so much, and you have given me a new chance in life. You keep on giving me grace, even when I fail so many times. Give me a hunger and a thirst for your righteousness in my life. Help me to treat other people properly in your eyes as well. Help me to be a part of the solution to the problems of this world, make me an instrument of your grace. Amen

 

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