It seems impossible to find peace amidst a constant longing. How can I look forward to the future while being satisfied in the present…content and at peace with God’s best for me right now? It has taken me twenty-two years of chasing what felt like a carrot out on the end of the stick, to realize that it will never be enough. On this side of eternity, we will never “arrive.” We will never feel complete peace and satisfaction. Yet, we keep trying, day after day.
There is an odd reassurance with this feeling. It is okay. I am not broken or without a purpose. I don’t know what it is for you, but in my life, I have held success and relationships on a pedestal…one which I cannot ever seem to reach. While the weight of this pursuit is steady, somedays the discouragement can come over you like a wave.
We try and try. It is an unending cycle. Our pursuit of peace creates just the opposite. Striving after a deep longing plants feelings of inadequacy and anxiety in our hearts. Taking moments to stop and rest I realize how far I have strayed from it.
For me, stepping out of this cycle requires the assurance that it is okay. We will never feel completely satisfied and content and that should point us to our Lord. In Him and only Him will we find that peace. It is a simple reassurance for today, a reason to find joy amidst the chaos and a magnificent hope for the future. One day we will rest in perfect peace. That is what we truly long for. The book of Romans and 2 Corinthians use the picture of eager longing and groaning for the return of Christ; “to put on our heavenly dwelling.”
There is a strange reassurance with the reality that we will not find this complete peace on this side of eternity. It creates a confidence in my heart as I approach life’s troubles. This is not the first and it will not be the last. Our Lord has been faithful before and He will be with us to the end. We will never walk alone, yet our lives are not purposed for perfect peace on this side of eternity. Our purpose requires trials and through our trials, we draw closer to the source of peace…one day resting with Him forever. And in that, I find my peace amidst the craziness of today.
This week I had the rare blessing of long quiet mornings. As I poured over this longing, I searched the Word for what the Lord had written to me and to His countless children who have known this same longing. I was intrigued by the wording throughout Scripture regarding this topic. It was a call to come and cast our longing upon the Lord and to walk in freedom. What a beautiful picture and yet another reassurance that it is okay. I would encourage you to read each of these passages within the context of the entire chapter or Psalm. I hope that you find the same encouragement and hope as that in which I now rest.
- “O Lord, all my longing is before you; my sighing is not hidden from you” (Psalm 38:9)
- “For he satisfies my longing soul, and the hungry soul he fills with good things” (Psalm 107:9, ESV)
- “For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God” (Romans 8:19, ESV)
- “For in this tent we groan, longing to put on our heavenly dwelling” (2 Corinthians 5:2).