Why God Always Connects Your Physical Needs to Your Spiritual Life

The One who set eternity in our hearts created in us a hunger that space and time cannot satisfy.

The superscription of Psalm 63 notes how David prayed the psalm in the wilderness of Judah, either while fleeing from King Saul or, later, from David’s rebel son Absalom.

Why God Connects Your Physical Needs to Your Spiritual Life

(Photo: Sunset over the Judean Wilderness. Courtesy of the Pictorial Library of Bible Lands)

My soul thirsts for You, my flesh yearns for You, in a dry and weary land where there is no water. —Psalm 63:1

The “dry and weary land” that David described also described his own weariness, and the lack of water around him served to surface an even deeper thirst. At the height of his emotional and physical distress, David sought refuge in his spiritual life.

He yearned for God.

Our physical needs are connected to our spiritual lives for that very reason.

Connecting Physical Needs to Spiritual Ones

A thousand years later, Jesus found Himself tempted in this very same wilderness, the Lord quoted Scripture to Satan, reminding him that people need more than bread for their life—they need God’s Word (Luke 4:4). During great temptation and physical distress, Jesus turned to the Word of God for strength.

Judean Wilderness near Jericho

(Photo: Judean Wilderness near Jericho. Courtesy of the Pictorial Library of Bible Lands)

The One who set eternity in our hearts created in us a hunger that space and time cannot satisfy.

It is just no good asking God to make us happy in our own way without bothering about religion. God cannot give us a happiness and peace apart from himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing.
 —C. S. Lewis

Why God Connects Your Physical Needs to Your Spiritual Life

This world offers so many false solutions to our hunger, but in the end they only deepen the pangs. The gnawing within our soul finds rest only within God’s presence and within the pages of Scripture.

  • We eat, but we hunger again.
  • We drink,
 but we thirst once more.
  • We work, but it never gives permanent satisfaction.

But Jesus promises that whoever drinks of
 the water He gives will never thirst again (John 4:14). Physical fulfillment offers only brief relief. Deep beneath the surface, we all suffer 
a craving that only God can satisfy. He has placed this provision in the words of Scripture.

God uses our physical needs to deepen our spiritual life. As with David and Jesus, even in our physical struggles and suffering God still expects us to walk with Him, and He holds us accountable to do so.

God calls us to love Him above physical relief—and not just for it. He want to be at the center of all we pursue today. 

Question: How has God taught you spiritual lessons through physical things? To leave a comment, just click here.

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This post is adapted from Wayne’s book, Going Places with God: A Devotional Journey Through the Lands of the Bible.
• These 90 devotional readings, each based on a specific place in the lands of the Bible, will help you apply the truths of God’s Word to your daily journey of faith.
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  • Jane Franks

    This is a very timely post, and I agree with you! I have been dealing with a massive cold, maybe viral infection for about a week — not life threatening, for sure — but miserable, and something I’m sure all of you can relate to. I’ve found myself wandering around in the middle of the night, not being able to sleep with coughing attacks, even taking all the proper stuff. Weakened physically, tends to weaken emotionally, too, and to complicate matters I am sole care giver for my husband who has spinal cord damage and other related ailments. I need to be well, and of course, God knows that. Anyway, last night I found myself faced with something I haven’t wanted to do, but told God I would do it, though I have no idea how and He will have to show me! I think being ill brought me to that need to be close to God and to be honest with Him on this issue.

  • Carole Russell

    I just got back from Israel about a month ago. About a month before I left I was in emergency with a torn meniscus plus other problems with my knee…that happened the day before my Mother, (she was on hospice) died. I got several shots in my knee and really felt God would deliver me from the pain by the time I got there. It didn’t happen. I didn’t have to go in a wheelchair or on crutches but I did go in pain, not unbearable, but it got bad at times. Nearly everyone on the tour helped me at some time. They were so gracious and caring…holding onto me and helping in many many ways. At times almost pulling me up high hills and hundreds of steps. It was gruelling but so worth it. God, through His body and by His grace helped me do everything that everyone else did except 1or 2 things. I mean impossible! I am not glorying in the pain but I thank Him. And I marched, with a cane, all the way through the Jerusalem March during Feast of Tabernacles. A precious Jewish man came out on the street and gave me a yellow rose! The spiritual rewards were so worth it. I would still like the pain to go away but thanking Him anyway

    • Wow, Carole. Your experience in the Holy Land is a fitting metaphor for life, isn’t it? I’m so glad you got to enjoy the land—the stage upon which God’s drama took place. What a privilege. Thanks for your words.

  • Jane Franks

    I do enjoy the special needs ministry blog and interact with Colleen from time to time. She is a great encourager. As all of you are! By the way, I went to the doctor today and I have bronchitis. So please pray that I get over this soon, and that Gene doesn’t get it. His lung capacity is compromised with this other complications, and that could be bad. God knows, and will get us through this.

    • You’re right, Jane. God holds our hands each step. Praying for you both.

  • Jane Franks

    Thank you so much!

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  • Michelle thick

    God has been there through all my struggles. Iv learned to trust that whatever happens his way will work. He is all I have right now. Because my life right now to the world is messed up. But I rely on God to take care of it.
    God bless
    And always good word

    • Yes, God’s way will work. What He wants to give us is always better than what we want Him to give us.

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