Thirst is one of the most dangerous things when you’re lost in the wilderness. You can go days without food, but you can’t go long without water. A lack of shelter is equally dangerous – how appropriate then, that “shelter” is another important metaphor for how God cares for us. Like going without water, going without God is spiritually dangerous. Our souls need sustenance, no matter what religion (or lack of religion) you claim. We get that sustenance from other people, from natural beauty, from scripture or poetry or prose, or even from religious experiences. Christians get spiritual sustenance through Christ, who we believe is living and active and present in our lives – “living” water like a running river (not stagnant like a pond or puddle) that quenches our spiritual thirst.
This verse isn’t a statement of hope or wishful thinking. It’s a statement of fact: my soul does thirst for God. The question implied is this: what will you do to quench it?