"So get rid of all evil behavior. Be done with all deceit, hypocrisy, jealousy, and all unkind speech. Like newborn babies, you must crave pure spiritual milk so that you will grow into a full experience of salvation. Cry out for this nourishment, now that you have had a taste of the Lord’s kindness." (1 Peter 2:1-3, NLT)
Peterson's version says to "clean house". It's a charge to understand where our focus is to be ... where our basic craving can find fulfillment. It isn't, like I'd heard for decades, the formula for "baby Christians" to start with. No, it's the design of God for dependence on him alone. I really heard that for the first time today. And, much like what I had been taught, it is a start ... but it's the entrance into what God will do, not what I can become when and if I "mature".
This passage the way I heard it today talks about the singular focus of an infant on its only known source of life and sustenance. That baby doesn't have to be taught that Mom provides everything ... it knows that instinctively and the crying out, or "craving", doesn't recognize any time boundaries or other impediments to fulfillment. That is exactly how God wants us to crave him ... with the laser-like focus of an infant who is hungry.
So, friends, this isn't about jettisoning the milk an moving on to steak. It's about returning to our first love and craving for who God is and what he desires for us ... a complete and abundant life that spills out through us into a world that is also craving. We get to help God do the work of fulfilling their core desire by pointing them to the ONLY source of life.
The Crooked Path will provide many opportunities to intersect with others, but unless we understand our craving and connect to God as the source, we'll fall flat. Or as Paul tells us to start the Love Chapter to the Corinthians,
"If I could speak all the languages of earth
and of angels, but didn’t love others,
I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal."
Where do you look to fulfill your craving? It's something worth thinking about.