Sustain. Sufficient. Enough.
Have you ever had a strong craving for a food and tried to fulfill it with other foods only to find yourself stuffed but still wanting the food you originally craved? I’m really bad with craving specific foods. One of my biggest cravings is usually for chocolate chip cookies, but not like chips ahoy, more like home made soft but crunchy on the edges. Yes it’s that bad.
Years ago I went to San Francisco for the first time and experienced the Gheridelli Factory. I was in HEAVEN. at Gheridelli they have colossal chocolate chip cookies. The first time I was there I bought one. For the next month no other cookie would do and driving 6 hours just to fulfill a craving wasn’t logical. By the end of summer I had been back and stocked up, ok I bought a few, because I knew I wouldn’t be back for a while.
As I look back on this week I have noticed that this isn’t just a pattern physically but a lot of times this is a pattern spiritually too.
“Preserve me, O God, for in you I take refuge. I say to the Lord, “You are my Lord; I have no good apart from you.”” Psalm 16:1-2 ESV
I’ve come to realized that my soul tends to crave certain things; I long to hear affirming words, I long to have intimacy with people and see that they still choose me, I long to be loved unconditionally. But unfortunately I’ve gotten used to seeking to get those needs met through friends, parents, mentors etc. For a long time I thought there was nothing wrong with that, until this week came and I found myself extremely sad and wanting to run away. Going to my phone I typed out a text to a friend asking her to pray for me. Then I realized, I hadn’t even prayed myself.
“The sorrows of those who run after another god shall multiply; their drink offerings of blood I will not pour out or take their names on my lips.” Psalm 16:4 ESV
As I sat in my room looking at the text I was convicted. I realized that I was trying to satisfy a soul craving with a human encounter. I’ve done this many times.
I find it’s interesting that the word sacrifice means to surrender possession to a god or another divine being. Though most of us no longer sacrifice things physically I found that I often surrender parts of my heart to beings. Like the author of Psalm 16 I found that my sorrows were multiplying. Why? Because I had people set up as other gods in my life. God gently reminded me of the purpose of this wilderness season, “To believe that you are great simply because I made you, not because of anything that you do or anyone that you’re associated with. Just because I made you.”
In this season I’m finding that Life is made up of many moments. Those moments have been given to us so we can make choices, choices that either fill our soul cravings or allow them to stay unfilled.
“The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup; you hold my lot. The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance. I bless the Lord who gives me counsel; in the night also my heart instructs me. I have set the Lord always before me; because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.” Psalm 16:5-8 ESV
In no way am I saying that friends, godly counsel, asking for help etc is wrong but when we are stressed out and our desire to talk to a person is constantly stronger than our desire is to talk to God we are trying to eat something that won’t fully satisfy the craving. When we feel unloved, unworthy, and not important and choose to allow likes on social media to fill a craving that God’s truth and love are supposed to fill, we aren’t fully satisfying the craving.
Toward the end of summer, the year that I discovered those amazing cookies, I was talking to a friend who was working on getting healthy. We got into this talk about sugar and he challenged me to give up chocolate chip cookies for 2 months and choose a better alternative. Though I didn’t want to I chose to accept his challenge. Those 2 months were tough but as I chose other things I found that the desire for chocolate chip cookies subsided and I started to desire healthier foods.
Just like my body craved sugar but later was craving healthy things, sometimes we are so used to satisfying our soul cravings with things that aren’t enough and we have to choose to allow Him to satisfy those cravings. Over time as we continue to run to him we realize we are deficient of something, our desires will change because we will see that He knows the best way to fill those needs. Allow Him to become the one you desire.
As you go along your journey I pray that God would show you areas that He wants to be your portion. Areas that have been surrendered to others in your life. Areas where you’ve tried to satisfy the craving with doing things or talking to other people and finding that it helped momentarily but you weren’t satisfied. As you choose to allow the One who created you to satisfy those cravings may you find yourself saying,“Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices; my flesh also dwells secure. For you will not abandon my soul to Sheol, or let your holy one see corruption. You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.”Psalm 16:9-11 ESV
Keep journeying dear friends