“As the deer longs for streams of water, so I long for you, O God.”
Last year I lived in Bonifay, Florida and men in Bonifay, live to hunt. Wanting to be manly, I decided to try it out.
On the first day of the season, I woke up while it was still dark, trudged through the mud, climbed the stand, sat down, and tried to remain completely still. I waited, and waited, and waited… no deer. If you want to know what hunting is like, it is similar to going to Disney. You get excited, wake up early, arrive with high hopes, and then… wait around all day.
However, I learned some things about hunting that day. First, the branches on the trees start to look like antlers after a few hours. Second, location is extremely important. Our deer stand was in a bad location. If you want to get a deer, you must be in the right spot at the right time.
The right spot and the right time for many hunters in biblical times was near the water. They didn’t have long range weapons, so if they wanted to bring food home they had to get close, real close. One of the best places to do that was near the water. Animals, need water to survive, so hunters would wait (apparently a really long time) near the water. That meant a deer had to risk its life to get a drink of water. Since I learned that a few years ago I have never read Psalm 42:1 the same. “As the deer longs for streams of water, so I long for you, O God.”
The Psalmist deeply longed for God. What do you deeply long for? Risking death is a reality for many Christians around the world. Let us remember them as we continue our fast.