crave: hunger, desire earnestly, seek fervently
As the theme of Campus Crusade's WBR in Wilmington, the word crave has probably summed up the focus of my thoughts and energy for quite a long time.
Here's my list of some past, and current, cravings...
Patience. Meaningful friendships. A solid, godly relationship with a mature guy. Direction. Perfection. A "place" at Carolina. The next step. The ability to stick up for myself. Pursuit of the Lord on a daily basis. Joy. Hope. Wisdom. Community. And most recently, peace and contentment.
Most of these cravings are not sinful in themselves, for God has innately given each of us desires meant for His glory. But problems arise when we become consumed with our cravings, making them turn into idols. I haven't thought about my cravings in this way before, especially since the majority my cravings are inherently good things.
This weekend, I attended two small break-out sessions, one devoted to the balance of friendships and the other about the search for peace. As the seniors shared their testimonies, telling their stories in complete and open honesty, I started to relate to their pasts. I realized that I have been looking to fulfill my cravings in all the wrong places, for the wrong reasons. Anxiety, guilt, and stress have all marked my path toward seeking perfection, and I have tried to look like I have it all together on the outside for years. When in retrospect, I've been an utter mess on the inside. But God has done an incredible thing; He accepts us in spite of our flaws and makes beauty out of our brokenness. He might not answer all my prayers right away, but ultimately He is teaching letting me learn to have patience, another thing that I have been asking Him for.
Even though this year has been an up and down roller coaster of me losing and refinding myself, God has always had my best interest in mind. He's placed people in my life, at the exact moment I've needed them. Some relationships have suffered since I've been in college, I've learned to accept that distance is okay, but others have flourished and left me inspired to grow closer to the Lord. And as I've strayed many times to follow my own plan and go my own way, God has never once returned the favor. He is the father in the story of the prodigal son, the father that kept looking for his son even though he was a long way off.
Two truths I'm taking back from this weekend:
- Sin isn't just breaking God's rules, it's when we make our cravings into ultimate things.
- In Christ, the deepest longings of our soul will be satisfied.
2 Corinthians 12:10.