“Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good.” —1 Peter 2:2-3, NIV
Immediately after my son’s birth, he was quick to let me know what his taste buds longed for. He craved milk for what seemed like every hour of the day and on into the night. Without that sweet, nourishing milk, he would cry out in absolute desperation. When his need was met, he was the most satisfied baby in the world.*
The desire, frequency, and intensity that a newborn baby has for milk is the same kind of craving we’ve been exhorted to have for God’s Word.
While I know that God’s Word is necessary for spiritual growth and maturity, actually spending adequate time in Scripture in the midst of life’s demands is challenging.
And sometimes I feel like I crave everything else but God’s Word.
I make excuses that I’m busy, too tired, or that I’ll get to it eventually. I get frustrated that I’m struggling in my walk with Christ or that I’m not “growing.” Then the Holy Spirit, sometimes my caring husband, or a friend who knows me best gently says:
“How is your time in the Word?”
If I have to think long about my response, I know something is off and I always know the solution.
When I humble myself and flip open the pages of my Bible, mediate, memorize, pray, journal and rest in His promises, I’m never disappointed. I’m blessed to see His goodness and grace wash over me. Sin comes to light, negative attitudes, and areas in my life that need sharpening and sanctification. His words search the deepest parts of me, changing me to the core.
I see God’s greatness and how puny I really am. My doubts, worries, and fears seem smaller than before. I am refreshed and then able to serve and refresh others. All of which proves that his Word is alive, powerful and can change the most stubborn, prideful heart.
Jesus said: “Man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.” —Matthew 4:4
His Word is more important than the very food we consume each day and does so much more than provide temporary relief from physical hunger. It nurtures us spiritually in ways that benefit us eternally.
Lately, I’ve been thinking about how the more I exercise and eat right, the more my body begins to crave those intense workouts and nutritious foods. Similarly, the more time I spend in God’s word, the greater my desire is to be in it regularly. And I know something is missing when I’ve missed several days.
If we were to strip away every delight and pleasure in this world except for a craving and intensity for the words of God, we would have all we needed. We’d be completely satisfied because He is all we need in this life. Once we have tasted His goodness and love in our lives, it’s difficult to desire anything else.
That is the place I truly long to be.
Teach me, LORD, the way of your decrees,
that I may follow it to the end.
Give me understanding, so that I may keep your law
and obey it with all my heart.
Direct me in the path of your commands,
for there I find delight.
Turn my heart toward your statutes
and not toward selfish gain.
Turn my eyes away from worthless things;
preserve my life according to your word. —Psalms 119:33-37
Do you face any challenges with being consistent in God’s Word? What helps you crave Scripture?
*This article was originally written/published by the author under the title “Feeling the Crave.”