Memorizing the beatitudes, something has struck me that I've gnawed on for weeks:
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisfied. Matthew 5:6
There is something in this teaching of Jesus' that I believe sets what should be a daily aim for believers. I think on these words individually, collectively. Blessed: possessing the favor of God, being marked by fullness from God, said of one who becomes a partaker of God's nature through faith in Christ (2 Peter 1:4). The believer now has the Holy Spirit within them and as a result should be fully satisfied no mater the circumstances.
Blessed = having God's kingdom within one's heart
Blessed is the one who is in the world yet independent of the world. His satisfaction comes from God and not from favorable circumstances. And notice that this blessed is already, past tense. If you hunger and thirst for righteousness right now, you're already blessed. (But hold on because there's something even greater coming.)
But what does it really mean to hunger and thirst for righteousness? I really want to be that woman. But how? What does that look like? First, hunger and thirst: I can't fully grasp what it is to be truly hungry.  But a craving for thirst is something I recall. I was driving home late one night so incredibly thirsty and no water in the car. I was thirsty when I began the trip and the three hour journey was as long as ever without water to quench my thirst. The engineer called to check on me a half hour from home, "I am so thirsty, all I can think about it getting home and drinking huge glasses of water." I had to admit that I was too stubborn to stop and buy some at a gas station (I really just wanted to get home to water and sleep). I recall that water was truly the only thing I could think about. And is that how I approach the righteousness of God? Is He the only thing I can think about?
I love David's song in Psalm 42:1-2,
As a deer pants for flowing streams,
so my soul for you, O God.
My soul thirsts for God,
for the living God.
If you go on to read the rest of Psalm 42, you'll see David crying out to God, admitting a downcast heart, a life in turmoil. But his resolve is to hope in God, to praise Him. David can do that because He has a insatiable thirst for God. He wants God more than a fix to his problems.
Now, contrast hunger and thirst with satisfaction: Longing and craving or complete contentment. On the day of perfection, my longing and craving for God's righteous claim on my life will be complete and I will be content, full if you will.
And what about the word righteousness? There is much to study and learn of this Greek word: dikaisune. I can not contain it all. But in brief understanding, I learn that the righteousness of God is the claim God has on man's life. This is a gift (Romans 3:24) and man must accept this gift of righteousness by having faith in Christ. God then simultaneously performs the miracle of making us new (2 Corinthians 5:17) and is constantly changing our character to make us like Christ.
Romans 2:13 declares that there is a set time in the future when the doers of the law will be declared righteous. I connect these passages and see that when that time comes (when I stand before God) I will be fully righteous (perfect) and completely satisfied.
So to be craving righteousness right now is to look ahead to the future on the day when perfection comes, to strive to become conformed to the image of Christ (Romans 8:29), to walk justly (Micah 6:8), to make God's priorities my priorities (Matthew 6:33), to meditate on & wrestle with understanding His Word (Psalm 119, Joshua 1:8) just to name a few.
So I see that this is now (blessed) but also future (for we will be satisfied). What a gracious (gift-giving) God we have who loves us so much that He would bless us now and completely satisfy us when we meet Him face to face.

In what ways do you think we should we should be hungering and thirsting for righteousness?

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