Posts Tagged hunger

Longing, Yearning and Seeking

Psalm 63: 1

You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water.

Here are the words of someone who loves God, I mean who really, really loves God. Who do you think wrote these words? If you said, “David” you are right. One of the things I love about David is his passion for the Lord. He inspires me but also shames me a little. Another thing I appreciate about him is his willingness to express his love and devotion to the Father. I also am impressed with his ability to express these ardent emotions.

For those of us living in the western world, the expression of emotions is almost a lost art. We have learned to spurn emotions themselves, how much more the expression of them? God, though, is emotional. He is love which is more than an emotion but certainly involves the emotions. He also hates. Did you know that? Run a search on that and you will see. He and David had a love relationship with each other and neither was afraid to admit or express it. David was so demonstrative of his love for God that he made his wife mad. Maybe she was a bit jealous.

I admit that David embarrasses me a little with his confessions of love. Here is today’s verse as it appears in the Amplified version, “O God, You are my God; with deepest longing I will seek You; My soul [my life, my very self] thirsts for You, my flesh longs and sighs for You, In a dry and weary land where there is no water.” His longing for God is palpable. You can feel the deep yearning in his soul for the touch of God, for God’s presence. I find David’s desperate need for communion challenging but God says of David that he, “is a man after my own heart” (Acts 13: 22). David longed for the Father, trusted Him and sought to follow His ways. Some people talk about David’s sins but until God recognizes me as one after His heart then I will refrain from judging David. In fact, I look forward to meeting him and telling him how much his songs inspired me. Oh that I might be like David and yearn for the Father will all my being as he did; with a desire so strong for fellowship with the Father that he ached in his emotions and even in his body.

We are blessed that David shared his emotions and his relationship with God with us. We, like peeping Tom’s, get to peer inside and gain a new perspective on the depth of relationship we can enjoy with the Father even while we are here in the earth. “Bless the Lord oh my soul: and all that is within me, bless His holy name” (Psalm 103: 1) and teach me to seek Him as fervently as did David.

Satisfied

Psalm 107: 9            (Amplified)

For He satisfies the longing soul and fills the hungry soul with good.

We all know someone who is hungry on the inside. Their soul longs for something and thirsts desperately. They don’t even know what it is that they so urgently crave. As humans we try to fill that longing with all sorts of things. You know the list.

Each and every one of us has a place in our hearts, in our souls that only God can fill. We can try every sort of thing to make ourselves happy but it never works. We have a deep, spiritual place in our being that needs to be ministered to in like manner as we feed and nourish our minds and bodies. We are tri-dimensional beings and nothing short of spiritual food can feed the spiritual parts of ourselves. You can drink all the booze you want, work all the hours you can, go from lover to lover, and all of the other various things people do in order to satisfy themselves but none of it will satisfy. Money will never fill the void and neither can another person. So, if you are waiting for someone or something to make you whole, give it up. Only God can fill that spiritual void in your life. And don’t get to thinking that a bunch of non-Godly spirituality can do it. That is about like your body living on sugar alone. It will not, cannot satisfy. Only the love of God can fill that hungry spot. Only His Spirit can nourish your spirit. The sooner we all realize that our spirits long for His sweet embrace, the sooner we can get healthy, the sooner we will be whole.

Come In the Water

2 Chronicles 34: 27

“Because your heart was tender and you humbled yourself before God when you heard His words against this place and against its inhabitants, and because you humbled yourself before Me, tore your clothes and wept before Me, I truly have heard you,” declares the LORD.

There is a huge revelation in this verse for those who can hear it. It is this; let your heart be tender.

I confess that I have experienced great difficulty in this but my difficulty has, in the end, made me a bit of an expert. I have experienced the strain of trying to connect with God through a hard heart and the joy of experiencing Him through a tender heart. I can say with no doubt that one cannot enter into a deep and meaningful relationship with God if one’s heart is tough and calloused. That is why I so often write about allowing God to heal your heart. I know that God longs to have close, personal, daily communion with you but that you cannot hear Him if your heart is not tender.

I cannot help but recall the great frustration I felt when I desperately wanted to hear God speak to me but just couldn’t. I thought He wasn’t speaking. It felt like I was living life in a barren desert. Then, by grace, I learned that if I would be brave enough to allow Him to touch my heart that He would come into my life in a way that would not only satisfy my great hunger but that would also fill me to overflowing with His love, mercy and grace. I know beyond any shadow of doubt that the deep relationship that we crave with our father requires that we have a soft, tender heart through which He can commune. He doesn’t abide in our brains. He abides in our hearts so we must be able to engage our hearts in order to hear Him speak and to enter into the love relationship that He wants to share with us.

Our society does not teach us to be tender-hearted, rather the opposite in fact. Yet, many of you long deeply, hunger even, for the kind of relationship with the Father that you hear other people talk about. Honestly, it is natural for you to yearn for Him in that way. Your spirit, that place where your life force resides, craves the connection with the Holy Spirit. It is life. So, we must go against our training to allow ourselves to feel, to be tender. Frankly, many people do not have the courage for this kind of journey but once we realize the prize the journey becomes so much easier. There is no need for fear really. When you touch your heart you will find God and He is well able to care for you. It is what He wants to do after all.

If there is one encouragement I would give you above all others it is to allow God to touch your heart. Allow Him to heal the fears, the injuries and answer all of the questions. When we allow Him to heal our hearts then the tenderness which is His nature begins to saturate our beings. I am not telling you that you will turn into a crème puff. Actually, it is just the opposite your heart will become tender but you will have more courage than ever before. Frankly, it is fear that causes most people to harden their hearts. Once you have touched God in your heart and have the truth of Him living there you will have the courage of David. You will find that you also have the tenderness of David as well. You are going to like the real you that is revealed as the walls begin coming down and trust me, the people around you will too. The real you is glorious but is hidden in the recesses of your heart. Open up your heart and let the glory shine out. In your tenderness you will find great power and you will find love. Come on, jump in, the water is fine.

Starvation

John 6: 35

Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me shall not hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.”

I am overwhelmed today with how much hunger and thirst there is and I do not speak of the world but rather of the body of Christ. How can it be that people are dying of starvation who are of the Body and faint from thirst who are the children of God? Then there are those of us who are wasting away spiritually and are not even aware of our malnutrition. Have we been fed straw instead of wheat for so long now that we no longer even expect a full course meal for your spirit?

We, the church, ought to be powerful and strong in the spirit but we have become anemic. I believe the reason for this is that we are not being fed the bread of life. Jesus is not a one-time feast. He is our daily bread. Do you recall that in the Lord’s Prayer Jesus prayed, “Give us this day our daily bread,” (Matthew 6:11)? We are to feed daily if our spirits are to grow and be strong but all to often we find ourselves weak from the hunger.

The Body of Christ is famished and I blame me. God has called us to feed the sheep and yet the bodies of God’s beloved are strewn across the landscape, weak from lack of nourishment. If we love God we are to tend His flock. I have to question how well pulpit ministers are doing our jobs. How can the Body of Christ go about its Great Commission to reach the world with the love and grace of God if it has not been given sustenance? And how are you going to tend the lost if you are dying from mal-nutrition?

I am grieved that believers are not receiving what they need. Sure, each of us has a personal responsibility to draw upon Jesus daily for our needs but our churches and pastors must add to our plates as well. I can write to you for days upon end on my thoughts and ideas but in the end they are just vain philosophies, they are straw. The only thing that will actually nourish you is the Word of God which is, of course, Jesus who is the bread of life. Ministers who feed us on the Word are in fact feeding us Jesus who is the bread that will ever satisfy and water which ends thirst.

I don’t mean to be radical but honestly I have observed that the Word of God occupies less and less space in our worship services. Our brothers and sisters are dying on the battlefield because the pastor is more concerned about which congregation will be first to reach the local restaurant. Of course the pastor has been pressured to end the service earlier and earlier for that and other non-spiritual reasons. There is little room for the Holy Spirit to even have a say in most services these days. The upshot is that our people are dying. And if the children have no bread, then how are they to feed the lost?

If you have a pastor who teaches the Word of God and reveals the heart of the Spirit then you ought to get on your knees and praise God. If you do not, then you should stand on your feet and demand Bread! You have every right and should pull on any one who calls themselves a minister and demand that they feed you.

If you aren’t already so spiritually numb that you can no longer assess the condition of your spirit then you should do a spirit check and see how you really are. Are you anemic? Are you suffering from a lack of nutrition? If so, demand food. Look around you. Are the people you know spiritually alive or spiritually dead? What about the people at church. Are their spirits thriving or just hanging in there? Whether or not you have noticed it, we are living in spiritually perilous times. However, for those who are receiving nourishment these are exciting times. Make sure that you are receiving the sustenance that you need in order to keep your spirit thriving. Don’t be a casualty of war. There are resources. There are teachers. There are believers who yearn to be a blessing. Let us join together however we may to give each other needed nourishment.

Water in the Desert

Isaiah 58: 11

And the Lord will continually guide you, and satisfy your desire in scorched places, and give strength to your bones.

God has promised that He will guide you and when you follow Him you are necessarily satisfied and strengthened. Those things are in Christ, they are just part of the fulfillment of walking with him and in him. In these days God is calling out to His people as well as answering the cries of their hearts. He wants to be in close fellowship with you, daily fellowship.

I think that sometimes we carry around a deep, unsatisfied thirst. It seems, at times, unquenchable and the reason why is because there is only one thing that will satisfy that burning thirst and that is the Holy Spirit of God. God, however, has promised to fill us. In the New Covenant He has come and made His abode our hearts. Jesus is even now satisfying that deep thirst with his living waters and he promised us we would never thirst again.

Have you had a deep, unquenchable thirst or an unsatisfied hunger? Have you ever felt that there was something missing or that you have just not received enough yet? Maybe you have the sense that there is something more for your life. Then today is your day for today is the day of filling. Jesus is in your presence right now with his hand outstretched. He is calling out your name. Hearken to the word of the Lord and be filled to overflowing. Receive your anointing in the Holy Spirit. Allow yourself to be completely immersed in the waters of the Holy Spirit. You will find that you are quite comfortable and you will find healing for aches you didn’t even know you had. Your Father desperately wants to give you all of Himself. Open your heart and receive His abundance in the name of Jesus.