I open my mouth and pant, because I long for your commandments. Psalm 119:131
When an animal is chasing something, he pants. The hunt is all-consuming. I have no trouble, when describing something in the animal kingdom, as one who pants. But in the distinguished world of human beings, to admit to panting seems extreme and inappropriate to talk about. David wasn’t so provincial. His spiritual hunger was edgy.
I look inside this morning and consider the longings of my heart. Am I alive enough to pant for God? Is my appetite that consuming? Am I on the hunt for more experiences of Christ, more revelations of His love, more understanding of His truth? Is my heart yearning for Him, leaning into Him for life itself? May it be.
Some days it is so. Today is one of them. I feel wonderfully alive, very passionate, wholly in touch with the Christ in my Spirit. Some days, though, are dull. My appetite seems dormant. Such is the experience of any of us who live in mortal bodies. A bad night’s sleep can numb out feelings, even spiritual ones. Long term stress can tax my endocrine system, making positive emotional experience inaccessible. It is all so delicate, isn’t it? I’m glad to say that these are the exceptions.
Panting should be the norm. My capacity to enjoy the kingdom should be limitless. My taste of the things of God should be exhilarating that I run to Him at fast speed for more of it. I just can’t get enough. Until I pant as David pants and until my language reflects such desperate need, I am not fully alive.
Trials shake up indifference. I praise you for the fruits of them. Amen