We wanted to recommend a book to you that is really insightful and has impacted our hearts. The book helps identify God given longings in each of us and gives biblical context on how to rightly satisfy them. It is a free download at this address ( http://mikebickle.org/books/ ). Below is a quote from the introductory chapter on the nature of longing in the human heart.
“Few words in the English language capture such depth of emotion in two short syllables. A longing is not a superficial want that might be satisfied by a simple act of kindness. A longing is not even a genuine need for which we can demand satisfaction. Longing goes deeper than that. A longing is an ache of the heart. It is a cavity of the spirit crying to be filled. In its deepest sense it is neither a true verb nor a true noun, but combines the two, spanning the gap between emotion and genuine need. It is an intangible feeling that ebbs and flows, yet it is a concrete reality. It cannot be reasoned with, negated or dismissed. If not attended to, it will overtake us. One way or another, whether legitimately or illegitimately, a human longing will be filled. It must be. We are made in His image, and He intentionally planted longings deep within our hearts that only He can fill. He hard-wired us to need, to want, and to find our satisfaction in Him and Him alone. It is the epitome of intelligent design. God’s design—both brilliant and diligent—is evidence that He is a jealous God who does not want us to be given over to any lesser pleasure. We were made for Him.
To understand these longings is to better understand both our struggles and the true purpose of life. They are cravings put into us strategically by God and they entice us into His presence. Though the enemy twists these cravings to tempt us into darkness, they are actually amazing counterparts to characteristics in God’s personality and realities in His heart. As with all hunger, these longings have an element of pain, an element of delight and an element of aching as they woo us into God’s presence. When these longings are not fulfilled in God, we are left empty, with pain, mourning and dissatisfaction. We have built into us a God-shaped vacuum, which remains empty until we allow God to fill it by fulfilling our deepest longings. This gnawing hunger is only sated by God’s touch, and never totally fulfilled in this age. Even so, having the merest taste of this satisfaction is to truly live, and having the faintest revelation of that future fulfillment is the pinnacle of what it means to be alive.”
- The Nature of Longing
- The Longing to be Enjoyed by God
- The Longing for Fascination
- The Longing for Beauty
- The Longing for Greatness
- The Longing for Intimacy without Shame
- The Longing to be Wholehearted
- The Longing to Make a Deep and Lasting Impact