For He has satisfied the thirsty soul, And the hungry soul He has filled with what is good. Psalm 107:9 NASB
Dehydration plagued football players around the country in the 1960's. In the summer of 1965 a University of Florida assistant coach, determined to find a solution, met with several university physicians. The researchers discovered that fluids, electrolytes, and carbohydrates, which were being lost through sweat during practice, were not being replenished. They created a carbohydrate-electrolyte beverage, an aid, that could be used to replace what was lost during intense practices - thus the birth of what we know now as "Gatorade" (www.gatorade.com). Endurance drinks help to sustain athletes longer, so they can push themselves further.
I remember this song from when I was a child, "Gatorade is thirst aid, for that deep, down body thirst!" Physically, our body lets us know when we are thirsty. The range of our need for hydration varies from the daily need of water, to the deep need of endurance drinks needed to sustain prolonged physical activity, such as Gatorade. Our bodies let us know when we are physically parched, however, spiritual thirst is harder to identify.
Did you grow up loving God, but now feel distant from Him? Do you have a friend who has talked to you about having a relationship with God, but you think he or she is crazy and you really have no idea what he or she is talking about? Maybe you have a Bible study that you have been invited to several times, and you secretly really want to go, but you use the excuse that you are too "busy." Has someone whom you love come to know God, and His Son, and tried to share His love with you? Does that make you angry or upset? Maybe that anger is actually because you yourself are a little thirsty for the knowledge of Him or interested in knowing that deep, unconditional love?
Depending on where you are on your walk with God, you may be thirsty for just knowing Him, or you may be thirsty for knowing more of Him. When God draws you near to Him, you know there is something more to life, but sometimes it is hard to identify what that deep yearning is inside your soul.
Many people try to quench this initial thirst with self-help books, fun friends, or even food and drinks. Those temporary fixes never really satisfy this thirst. They are the Gatorade which help you get through the trials and tribulation of life. Physically, even the best endurance drinks wear off, and do not quench this intense thirst, or longing, for knowing God. Similar to our daily need for water, they may help us endure longer, but they are constantly needed in order to replenish our bodies when we are depleted.
Turning to God and accepting your need for Him in your life today, allows for you to be filled with the "living water." God’s Word says that,
If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of god, God lives in them and they in God. 1 John 4:15 NIV
The Son of God, a sacrificial gift from God for each one of us, is the "living water" (John 4:10).
He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, “From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.” John 7:38 NASB
Quenching the thirst for God is the first step to building spiritual endurance. Regardless of where you are in life, it is not too late (or too early) to commit to knowing God. You may begin by asking the questions you were once scared to ask, or joining the devotional group/Bible study that you didn't have time for before. Reach out to friends who have already committed to knowing God more. It may seem uncomfortable at first, just like the beginning of a good running/training program, but we all have to start somewhere!
Heavenly Father, thank You for helping me to recognize the thirst for God which You placed in me. I am beginning to understand that You are the only One who can quench my thirsty soul with Living Water. I pray for the courage to quench the thirst. May I begin that Bible study that I have wanted to join. May I walk into that church that calls my name every time I drive by it. May You provide people in my life to help me quench the thirst for You. Thank You for giving me the courage to begin, or to reach out to someone I know who is spiritually thirsty. In the Precious Name of Jesus I Pray, Amen.