Hunger and Thirst for Righteousness
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
for they will be filled.
(Matthew 5:6, NIV)
When most people get up in the morning, one of the first things they do is get something to eat and something to drink. Food and water are a necessity to life and something that we consume multiple times per a day. Many people carry a water bottle with them everywhere they go so they will never be without it. Throughout the day, with a water bottle on our desks, we will drink without realizing it. In the evenings, while watching television, we will snack unconsciously. Water and food are a conscious and unconscious part of our lives.
Do we hunger and thirst for the Lord in the same way?
Righteousness is a condition of our hearts. It is not something we can achieve on our own. Actions can show righteousness but the condition of our hearts determine if our actions are righteous. For example, the Pharisees acted righteous. They claimed they were more righteous than most, however, Jesus could see the condition of their hearts. Their actions were done out of pride and obligation. Righteous actions are done out of love for the Lord.
When we hunger for food, we go eat it. When we thirst for a drink, we go drink it. Think of how many times throughout a day you eat and drink. Now think about how many times a day you talk with God. How often do you stop and consider if your actions are pleasing to Him?
After we eat, our stomachs are full. After we drink, our thirst is quenched. Until we are not and we go back for more. Similarly, we should always be seeking to experience righteousness with God. But how do we know?
When we are righteous, we will be filled. But filled with what? We will be filled with the Lord. The Lord provides us with peace. He takes away our worries and fears. He calms our soul. Amid difficulties, the Lord provides us with wisdom and peace.
The Jews lived in an uncertain time. They were under Roman rule and while they were allowed to practice their religion, they remained under Roman law. It was cause for alarm and anxiety for many. Jesus was showing them the way to peace. It is still a way to peace for us, as we live under the rule of a secular world.
God is the ultimate ruler. In the end, His justice, true justice, and rightness will prevail. Those who do not wait, who seek out His righteousness now, are blessed with it. No matter our circumstances in life, a full life in Jesus Christ is possible. We must seek it, as often as we seek food and water.
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