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Posted: July 5, 2012 9:30 p.m.

McCoy: Thirsty in spiritual desert

God! My God! It's you- I search for you! My whole being thirsts for you! My body desires you in a dry and tired land, no water anywhere.
Psalm 63:1
(Common English Bible)

Have you ever been really thirsty? I mean tongue sticking to the roof of your mouth thirsty? I have. Recently, I traveled to Arizona, a land of dry hotness. It was so dry there that my body longed for water. It seemed that no matter how much I drank, I thirsted for more. I couldn't seem to get enough water. We bought water bottles and took them everywhere, but still I thirsted - like I was in the middle of the desert and had not had a drink in days.

Sometimes my spirit gets thirsty, too. It seems that I can't spend enough time with God. I long for God, and my whole life just feels dry and parched. The Psalmist knew what it meant to be spiritually thirsty. Read the words aloud, "My God! I search for you! My whole being thirsts for you!" Maybe you are in a spiritual desert today. God is closer to you than your breath, waiting for you to utter the words, "God, I need you!" Howard Thurman, a great 20th century educator, theologian, and civil rights advocate wrote a poem that expresses the sentiments of the Psalmist:

GOD, I NEED THEE.
When morning crowds the night away
And tasks of waking seize my mind;
I need Thy poise.
GOD, I NEED THEE.
When love is hard to see
Amid the ugliness and slime,
I need Thy eyes.
GOD, I NEED THEE.
When clashes come with those
Who walk the way with me,
I need Thy smile.
GOD, I NEED THEE.
When the path before me lies,
I see it...courage flees-
I need Thy faith.
GOD, I NEED THEE.
When the day's work is done,
Tired, discouraged, wasted,
I need Thy rest.
~Howard Thurman (Deep is the Hunger)

Are you in a spiritual desert today? Are you thirsty for God? Will you simply pray, "God, I need you" today?

Rev. Jan McCoy is the associate pastor of Covington First United Methodist Church in downtown Covington. She may be reached at jan.mccoy@ngumc.net.

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