“God, You are my God; I eagerly seek you. I thirst for You; my body faints for You in a land that is dry, desolate, and without water.” Psalm 63:1.
Deserts, by their very definition, receive very little rain. Because of this, water is a precious commodity in areas with a desert climate. When trekking through the desert, one’s biggest concern isn’t the heat or the intense blaze of the sun, rather the most critical concern is dehydration. There are measures a person can take to deal with the sun and heat, but without water there is nothing anyone can do to avoid dehydration. A human will sweat and lose drastic amounts of vital fluids from the combination of sun and heat, and because there is such a lack of water to replace these fluids, dehydration sets in very quickly. While in the desert, the desire for water is so great that it can drive a person crazy. In fact, many people who have survived severe desert experiences recount seeing mirages, or visual illusions that are the result of the severe heat and lack of water. In many of these accounts, the most common mirage people see is an oasis, or a random source of fresh drinking water in the middle of the desert. The desire for water will supersede any other bodily desire, and only water can satisfy that craving–nothing else will do.
This psalm compares our physical need for water in a desert to our spiritual need for God. This world is a spiritual desert, and our souls long for some crucial missing element. While we are in our sinful states, we do not realize that God is the element that we seek. Instead we try to seek satisfaction and fill the hole in our souls with any number of vices, drugs, alcohol, sex, or anything else imaginable. But these are nothing more than mirages, and these sinful illusions leave us feeling emptier and more spiritually dehydrated than we were before.
As David writes in this psalm, God is the only thing that will satisfy the thirst of our souls. He is the only thing that can fill the hole within us. He alone is our satisfaction. In Him, we have a deep spring of water that will keep our spirits nourished and satisfied, even in the driest of deserts. We must continually seek after Him and seek to stay nourished in Him.