I, As the Deer Pants

There is a song 'As the Deer Pants' which is based on the panting deer in Psalm 42. I think about it on my heart today. I think about the deer and its thirst. The deer's thirst is, for a moment, satisfied by one drink. But the thirst soon returns again. As long as the deer lives, it will thirst for water.

I thirst for worshipping and getting close to God. This thirst leads me to go to lonely places. It leads me to hear God in the most difficult moments. It also leads me to another church an hour away from home. Somehow the thirst I experience is being filled. I am wanting to taste fresh, life-giving water. The longings of my heart, that's what I'm really trying explore.

The Lord in Psalm 42 uses the panting deer to assure me that it's okey to thirst for His presence. God is pleased when I earnestly seek Him (Hebrews 11:6.). I feel peace and joy in my heart when I thirst for Him and get satisfied.

Bu it also makes me wonder at this thirst I'm having. Why is it that this thirst is only to be satisfied or quenched for a time? The more I taste and see that the Lord is good, the more my heart gets thirsty. It seems I'm thirsty and satisfied at the same time! What a contradiction.

"Then Jesus declared, 'I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.' " (John 16:37)

"...but whoever drinks the water (living water) I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life." (John 4:14)

The spring of living water wells up to eternal life. My thirst for the living water will not truly be satisfied until perfection comes and I see Him face to face (1 Cor. 13:10, 12). This tension between "thirsting" and "being satisfied" remains until I see Him.

Psalm 42:1-2 "As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God?"

As The Deer
Words and music by Martin Nystrom
© 1984 Marathana Music

As the deer pants for the water
So my soul longs after Thee
You alone are my heart's desire
And I long to worship Thee

You alone are my strength, my shield
To You alone may my spirit yield
You alone are my heart's desire
And I long to worship Thee

You're my friend and You are my brother
Even though You are a King
I love You more than any other
So much more than anything

I want You more than gold or silver
Only You can satisfy
You alone are the real joy-giver
And the apple of my eye