Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied” (Mt 5.6).
It’s encouraging to me that it is not righteous people who are satisfied, or made full, it is those seeking righteousness, those who are desperate for righteousness as for water in a dry land, are those who are satisfied with fullness.
You don’t have to arrive at the well to be refreshed, if fact, you never really arrive, because as you seek first God’s kingdom in your heart and life He satisfies you along the way, “from glory to glory,” St. Paul wrote, changing you, deepening your life in Christ, conforming you into His very image.
Positionally, it is a life that is not only pursuing Christ daily, but also resting in Christ as our Life and Breath. Saint Maximus (7th c.) described it as an “ever-dynamic rest,” always growing and developing in ever greater union with the uncontainable and inexhaustible richness and fullness of divine being and life.
God has given us a nature which is always moving, always in pursuit of something. We will either be occupied with vain pursuits or the pursuit of God. Vain pursuits, which include any worldly distraction that catches our eye and moves in front of our mindfulness of Christ, will lead to zero spiritual progress. The brakes are applied and until we recalibrate our lives through repentance, our growth in Christ is stopped. If we move at all it will be away from the throne during these distracted times, not toward it.
Remember the words of St. Paul who summarizes the hunger and thirst for righteousness in athletics terms, “. . . But one thing I do, forgetting what lies behind, and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Let those of us who are mature be thus minded . . .” (Phil 3.13–16).
Like meekness, this beatitude is not so much just a one-time choice, but rather a reflection of a life observed over time. In meekness it is gentleness, kindness and servanthood. In the hunger and thirst for righteousness it is the focus of my soul on Christ, knowing Him, making Him my goal, path and prize. Strangely, this single-mindedness will make me a better man, a better husband, and father, a better boss or employee. Because I become more and more like Jesus with every step toward Him.