Psalm 36 - Our Deepest Longings

I have a message from God in my heart
concerning the sinfulness of the wicked:
There is no fear of God
before their eyes.
In their own eyes they flatter themselves
too much to detect or hate their sin.
The words of their mouths are wicked and deceitful;
they fail to act wisely or do good.
Even on their beds they plot evil;
they commit themselves to a sinful course
and do not reject what is wrong.
Your love, LORD, reaches to the heavens,
your faithfulness to the skies.
Your righteousness is like the highest mountains,
your justice like the great deep.
You, LORD, preserve both people and animals.
How priceless is your unfailing love, O God!
People take refuge in the shadow of your wings.
They feast on the abundance of your house;
you give them drink from your river of delights.
For with you is the fountain of life;
in your light we see light.
Continue your love to those who know you,
your righteousness to the upright in heart.
May the foot of the proud not come against me,
nor the hand of the wicked drive me away.
See how the evildoers lie fallen—
thrown down, not able to rise!

David speaks about the wickedness of the heart in Psalm 36, demonstrating an amazing understanding of human nature. There is no fear of God in us, he rightly says. We flatter ourselves too much to be able to detect, much less hate our sin. Even as we lie down to sleep, all we do is think evil thoughts. Is this not true of most of us?

And then David contrasts God with us, declaring that his steadfast love reaches to the heavens, his faithfulness to the skies, his righteousness like the highest mountains, and his justice like the great deep. Despite our sinfulness and unworthiness, God's love remains steadfast and true. How amazing is that! Perhaps it might motivate us to turn away from sin and rebellion and place our trust in God, who alone can satisfy the deepest longings of our hearts.

How does God satisfy these longings? One is through his presence. We heard the psalmist declaring earlier: "You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand" (Psalm 16:11). When we experience God's presence in our lives, we are filled with joy and a sense of purpose.

God also satisfies the deepest longings of our hearts through his love. The evangelist John speaks about how "God is love" (1 John 4:8). God's love is unconditional, unchanging, and unending. When we experience God's love, we are filled with a sense of worth and acceptance.

A third way that God satisfies the deepest longings of our hearts is through his peace. Paul speaks about how "the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard our hearts and our minds in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:7). When we experience God's peace, we are filled with a sense of calm and contentment. 

Joy, purpose, worth, acceptance, calm, contentment. All reasons enough to turn away from our wicked ways and feast in the abundance of God's house, no? Let’s do that today.

God bless you.