Sad but Stubborn: Homesick

“My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God?” (Psalm 42:2)

It’s a vivid memory. I was in college at the time and sitting in my car in a Wendy’s parking lot and listening to Rich Mullins sing “Be With You.” And out of nowhere I felt like crying.

sad_350I’d been thinking a lot about what was missing in my life. I’d been a Christian since kindergarten. I’d pretty much done everything I knew to do as a Jesus follower. Why didn’t it feel like enough? Why was I wondering if I’d been wasting my time? Wasn’t following Jesus supposed to take away all the emptiness?

Then I heard Rich sing that song and it hit me: “I’m not home, yet.” I’m not with God, yet. Not in the way I will be. What I was missing was being with my Father – and that loneliness made perfect sense.

The writer of this psalm is probably describing getting “home” to the temple and his worship of God there, but the emotion resonates. Paul described it, too. We were made for the Father and we won’t be fully satisfied until that moment comes.

Think: Have you ever had that sense that something was missing even though you had done everything a “good Christian” should do? Have you ever connected that feeling with being lonely to be with God?

Pray: Ask God to help your loneliness for him to draw you closer and to deepen your love and worship for him.

Do: If you haven’t, yet, read Paul’s description of this feeling in Romans 8:22-25 – and how the Spirit helps us turn that healthy sadness into prayer in verses 26-27.