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I believe many Christians are not satisfied people. They have not reached that place where they understand that spiritual satisfaction can only be found in God. They are still seeking satisfaction from good jobs, relationships, holidays, houses and other material things. None of these things are wrong in themselves, but they will never be able to satisfy the longings of our hearts, because these are spiritual longings placed within us by God Himself, longings He alone can satisfy. God promises us satisfaction: ‘You open your hand and satisfy the desires of every living thing.’ (Ps 145:16) If we are to grow up and become mature, then we have to learn that satisfaction is God’s plan for our lives…but this is a satisfaction which looks radically different to the world’s always-wanting-more idea of satisfaction. God’s satisfaction brings us to a place of contentment, where we learn that godliness with contentment is great gain. (1 Tim 6:6) In these verses from Isaiah 58:9-12 and Jeremiah 31:11-14, we read of God satisfying us, which is exactly what Jesus meant when He spoke to the woman at the well and said, ‘whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst.’ (John 4:14) Jesus satisfies us. He does this by giving us living water: ‘rivers of living water will flow from within them.’ (John 7:38) The language is one of abundance, just as Jeremiah talks of abundance and bounty. In God, there’s not just enough; there’s more than enough.
I can remember the day when God showed this to me for the first time. It’s etched in my mind: 4th September 2006, one of those ‘pivotal point incidents’ where things can never be the same again afterwards. It was the first day back at work for me after the summer holidays, an INSET day. I was fortunate to work in a Christian school and the very first thing we did every September was start with a time of praise and prayer. It was just an ordinary day. During that time of worship, I was introduced to the song ‘Enough’:
‘All of You is more than enough for
All of me, for every thirst and every need.
You satisfy me with Your love and
All I have in You is more than enough.’ (‘Enough’, Chris Tomlin & Louie Giglio)
That song captured my attention, my thoughts, my emotions. I’d never heard it before. I came home still singing it and Googled it. I bought the CD. I bought Chris Tomlin’s other CDs, based on that one song. It was a tumultuous term, filled with challenges, not least my own diagnosis of diabetes. But inwardly, something revolutionary was happening: satisfaction, refreshment, an inner conviction that nothing I faced was more than God could handle. God says in 1 Cor 10:13, ‘God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.’ In those days, I learnt for the first time what it means to be wholly satisfied with God.
God’s desire is to sustain His chosen people, both physically and spiritually, as a testimony of hope to the world: a testimony that points people to our loving, faithful and sustaining heavenly Father. The same is promised to each one of His children. He is our guide; He will satisfy our needs and strengthen us as we trust in Him.