This one comes to us from Nathan Hoff.

Why do I keep eating ice cream?

Why do I keep looking at porn?

Why do I keep drinking booze?

Why do I work like there’s no tomorrow?

Why do I binge-watch Netflix?

Why do I keep on ketoing?

Why do I keep looking for news?

Why do I keep checking the weather app?

I’ve been trying to replace the habit of checking social media first thing out of bed. I’ve relapsed some. On Tuesday I cracked my eyes open and thought about Facebook. Then I reminded myself of my new super-holy habit, and quickly considered resolving to “walk in victory” tomorrow. Walking in freedom tomorrow must be holier than never intending to walk in freedom. I could binge now, and still maintain a semblance of pious self-sanctification (PSS). PSS is something else on which I like to binge. I bet most of my church friends haven’t even made a resolution as ascetic as mine. I am basically a modern desert father. 

Right before I picked up my phone, I asked myself a question. “Why do I actually want to look at Facebook right now?” It occurred that I was believing a promise. It would satisfy me. Then I asked, “Why do I keep on looking at Facebook?” I don’t mean I keep on looking day after day. I mean I keep on hitting the refresh button to see if there is something I’m missing. At first I thought it was because it must really satisfy me. Finally, revelation. I keep looking at Facebook because it isn’t satisfying me. Every swipe, notification check, refresh is actually dissatisfaction expressed.

Like all the other things I’ve tried and kept on trying. The promise sounds the same. Satisfaction is right around the corner. Keep going. After two scoops, I hear a promise, One more will satisfy. After three episodes I hear a promise, One more will satisfy. After I get to my target weight, I hear a promise, 10 less will satisfy. One more. 10 more.

Bruce Springsteen diagnosis me right,

Like a river that don’t know where it’s flowing
I took a wrong turn and I just kept going
Everybody’s got a hungry heart

We don’t know where our hunger is leading us, but it must be towards satisfaction. Right? If a little is good, a lot must be better. But what if it just keeps flowing and going, and the end is dissatisfaction. What if my binge always ends in some cringe?

Springsteen’s Confessions called it a “hungry heart.” Augustine termed it a “restless heart.” U2 sang, “I still haven’t found what I’m looking for.”

The Beloved says, “Your love is better than wine” (Song 1:2). The psalmist cries, “As the deer pants for flowing streams, so pants my soul for you, O LORD” (Ps 42:1). And again–“You satisfy me in the morning with you loyal, never-ending, covenantal love” (Ps 90:14).

Featured image: zeevveez