Our Soul Craves God

Fr Athanasios Preaching

We eventually learn in life that our bodies don’t always want what we offer them. Any casual trip to the refrigerator will prove that point. The same can be said about our soul. We go through life, searching and buying and never being satisfied. That is because out soul doesn’t want material things. Our soul craves God, and only when we offer our soul what it truly craves, will it ever be satisfied.

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Thank you for tuning in to another episode of Be Transfigured, where we invite you to live a new life in Christ. We pray that this episode is a blessing to you and will inspire you to rededicate your life to Jesus Christ. We invite you to join us for worship or study at the Saint Nicholas Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Tarpon Springs, Florida, where visitors are always welcome. We'll be back in a few moments to share some more information about our ministry.

The gospel this morning, my brothers and sisters, although it talks about food and water, isn't about food and water. It is about God. How many times, and you may have shared this experience, this is the case in my life many times. I think that I'm hungry and so I go to the refrigerator and I'm looking for something to eat. And of course my eye always goes to the sweet things in the refrigerator, the glika. I know you can't tell, but it's the truth. And I get something to eat. I eat this, I eat that, I eat this, I keep eating and for some reason I'm still hungry. Until I sit down and I realize that I was never hungry in the first place, I was thirsty. That's one thing that doctors remind us of, especially for those of us who are struggling with our weight. We have to learn to understand our body. We think we're hungry, but we're really thirsty.

Just like in life, we go out into the world and we think that we want all of these material things. We go out into the world and we think that what's going to make us happy is a bigger house. We think what is going to make us happy is a better job or a nicer car or nicer clothes. And we search and we search and we search and we buy and we buy and we buy, and we fill our lives with all of these things and still we're not satisfied. This is why Christ tells the woman in the Gospel this morning, "If you drink this water, you're going to thirst again. You're never going to be satisfied."

My brothers and sisters, we will never be satisfied with the physical things, the material things of this world, because our souls crave more. They don't care about food. They don't care about jewelry. They don't care about what kind of house we live in. Our soul craves God and wants to have a relationship with God and wants to receive Holy Communion, wants to receive God and to be one with God. That's what our soul craves. And so if we go out into the world and we're seeking all of these other material things, we, like the woman in this morning's gospel, will not be satisfied. And we will continue to wonder, "What is it that I need? What is going to make me satisfied?" Now notice I'm not saying the word happy because happiness is not always the same thing as being satisfied. They say money doesn't buy happiness. Money can buy some fun things and we can be happy having fun, but we'll never be satisfied. We'll always want more and more and more.

And so our Lord says, "If you knew who was talking to you, you would ask him and he would give you water and it would be like a gushing spring from you." Wouldn't you really enjoy just one day where you had enough peace inside that it was actually overflowing from you? Maybe you'd settle for just one hour. Today's your chance, in this divine liturgy. In just a moment, the choir is going to sing the beautiful hymn, the Cherubic Hymn, and the choir is going to say, "Let's lay aside all the worldly cares so that we may receive the King of all." My brothers and sisters, this divine liturgy and every divine liturgy is our opportunity to receive that which will fully satisfy us so we will not thirst ever again.

The woman at the well, her name is Saint Photini. We know it. She was amazed when she encountered God. "How could you know all of these things? Maybe he's the Christ." She goes to the city and brings everyone. She says, "Come. See the man who told me everything that I ever did." I think that's interesting because he really only told her one thing, that she had too many men in her life. But for her, that total truth, face-to-face with that truth, she recognized who God was at that moment. And it says the entire city came out to see him and they say, "Stay with us for a couple of days." And here is what I think is so beautiful, that opportunity for us to bring others to encounter Jesus Christ when we experience him. And they said after two days, "You know, we believe in you. We no longer believe because of what she said, but because now we have met you, because we have heard you, now we are satisfied." What a beautiful opportunity.

The world, my brothers and sisters, is searching for things that do not satisfy. And we know it to be true because we continue to run. Like they say, like the gerbil on the wheel, we're running, we're running, we're running, but we're not getting anywhere because we're running after the wrong things. If we can take just that truth from this morning's gospel, and as Christ said, if we know who is in front of us, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, he says, "You would ask and he would give you living water." Well, let's ask. From the depths of our heart in this divine liturgy, ask God to give you that living water, that true peace that only God can provide, and you will finally be satisfied. That's what God has to offer. Christos Anesti. Christ is risen.

Be Transfigured is a production of Be Transfigured Ministries in cooperation with the Saint Nicholas Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Tarpon Springs, Florida. We depend upon your generosity to maintain our ministry. You can make a safe online donation when you visit our website, wwww.LiveANewLifeinChrist.org.

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