Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. (Psalm 73:25–26)
The deepest desires of the redeemed heart perhaps find no truer expression than in the words of Psalm 73:23–28. “Whom have I in heaven but you?” verse 25 goes, “And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you.”
We read these words and say amen. We read them and we want to speak them with every bit of the same sincerity the psalmist had when he penned them. We want to desire God like this. We want him to be supreme in our affections like this. The verse becomes both our anthem, and our earnest prayer. “Lord, I want to yearn for you,” we plead and sing.
This isn’t fabricated spirituality. It isn’t our attempt to posture ourselves a certain way in order to earn God’s grace. These are words by God’s grace that crave for more. God, you and only you occupy this place in my heart. You and only you.
This is the most important thing in the universe. This is our testimony of experiencing God’s love, as the apostle John says: “We love because he first loved us” (1 John 4:19).
Our Greatest Passion
Knowing Jesus and loving him matters more than anything else in our lives. To be sure, other things are important. Faithful theology matters, walking in integrity matters, loving the church matters, a healthy marriage and good parenting matter — but what is knowledge and integrity and helping others when our hearts are not enthralled by Jesus? What lasting, sustainable impact will any of these things have if our hearts are not overcome by the glory of God’s grace? What is our understanding of the cross if the bleeding-dying-raising mercy of Christ doesn’t captivate our soul’s deepest gaze?
Better then, by God’s grace, is that our knowledge of God — and our holiness and our serving and our relationships — flow from a life consumed by our Savior. This is the life surrendered to his supremacy, the life of grace that yearns for the One who gives us our life and breath, the One in whom we live and move.
You and Only You
Here, in this longing, is where we confess that Jesus is better than anything in the world. Here is where we stop and say that whatever it is that we have going on in our lives, of all the good things God has given us, Jesus is absolutely better. We pray with St. Augustine, “Lord, bring to me a sweetness surpassing all the seductive delights that I once pursued. Enable me to love you with all my strength that I may clasp your hand with all my heart. . . . You, Lord, are my king and my God.”
Desiring God has partnered with Shane & Shane’s The Worship Initiative to write short meditations for more than one hundred popular worship songs and hymns. The Worship Initiative is an online platform devoted to training musicians for worship leading and songwriting. “Yearn” is included in their The Worship Initiative, Vol. 8, available through iTunes.