Welcome to week 2 of my “mummy meditation” series – I hope that you have enjoyed a week pondering, meditating and thinking around the following verse:
“All my longings lie open before you, Lord: my sighing is not hidden from you” Psalm 38:9
A key word that jumped out to me straight away was “longing”. What differentiates a want or a simple desire from a longing? I started off looking at the definition of longing, and what it might mean in David, the psalmist’s, life.
Longing: a strong, persistent yearning or desire, especially for something unattainable or distant
Looking into the life of David we know he had some amazing times and some pretty rough times too. Throughout the Psalms David always tells it how it is to God. He hides nothing, he shares his sky high praising moments and his really low shouty moments too. One of David’s big longings and desires was to build a temple for the Lord, a permanent dwelling place for God on earth, and I do wonder if that is what he is writing about here.
I think what sets apart a longing from a mere want is that you pursue it no matter what. It says in the definition that it is strong and persistent. If something is just a mere want, then in a few hours, days or weeks you forget about it. A longing carries on with you and doesn’t fade. This is the kind of feeling David had towards the temple. He even got everything set up and ready for his successor to complete his longing when God told him NO. So strong was David’s longing for God to have a home on earth that was fitting, he was happy for someone else to fulfill it instead of him.
Later in the Psalm David says this:
“Lord, I wait for you; you will answer, Lord my God“. Psalm 38:15
David kept bringing his longing before God because he knew God would answer. He kept petitioning God because it meant so much to him, but I think he also knew that God could answer in various ways. At the moment we are trying to teach our toddler that just because he asks us politely for something (a question with the word please at the end!) it doesn’t mean the answer is automatically yes!! We will always answer him, but it could be a yes, no or a not now. How willing are we to accept this as Christians; that God can answer with a no? Or a not now, but ask again later? Are we willing to accept that God might be testing whether we are asking out of want or out of longing, and that if we are strong and persistent in our asking the answer might change? And are we happy to accept that our longing might remain just that; a longing.
Lots of things to ponder this week – what did you take out of it? Here is my attempt of bible journaling this verse:
So I hope you have enjoyed looking a bit more into longing with me this week. The verse I have chosen for my mummy meditation next week is below so please feel free to join me in pondering it (I am working through Psalms at the moment – can you tell?!):
“He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear the Lord and put their trust in him.” Psalm 40:3