Devotional: Hunger

"He has filled the hungry with good things but has sent the rich away empty." Luke 1:53

  Ryan and I have been experiencing a deep sense of hunger (and not just because we aren't fans of South American cuisine). We are hungry for God. We are hungry for his presence to be the all-consuming passion in our lives. Not too long ago, we spent a week in a remote cabin in the mountains of Ecuador. God's presence was the only thing on our agenda. We had been traveling for a couple months at that point and felt like we were sort of coasting and not fully awake to the deeper things God was wanting to speak to us. So we wanted to welcome that fiery hunger for Jesus back into our lives. It's amazing what the Holy Spirit will do when we offer him our time. We worshiped, we prayed, we let him speak in the quiet places of our hearts, and we earnestly sought to be more hungry. And boy, did he deliver.

      Hunger is a gift from God, we just need to ask him for it. We as human beings have appetites for many things. We definitely don't lack in desires and cravings, it's just what we allow to satisfy us that will possess our hearts. Every one of us has a soul that longs for God, though we may not realize it. We live in a world of addictions because we are constantly searching to find that fulfillment. We have a HUGE capacity for enjoyment... who isn't looking to have a good time?! But deep inside our hearts, we all hear the whisper, "is not life more than this?" "Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?" (Matthew 6:25). What if our souls were made to be addicted to the presence of God? The One who truly satisfies and fills the hungry with good things.

         The truth is that God gives us the Holy Spirit without limit (John 3:36). We can have as much of God as we want, but do we really want him? Can we relate to David when he says of God, "earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water" (Psalm 63:1). The pleasures this world can give are temporary but the pleasure of loving God is an eternal enjoyment that can never be taken from you. I want to be so addicted to God's presence that I just can't function without him. Why would I want to live any other way? There is nothing in this world that can compare to the joy of knowing Jesus and loving him back with the same love he so lavishly pours out on us.

          I recognize that some of us may think God is boring, stoic, and rather uninterested in our personal enjoyment of him. Friends, lets be real, this could not be further from the truth! If we think God is boring and disconnected, perhaps we don't know him at all. We are speaking of the master artist who created this beautiful mysterious earth and made all of these bizarre looking animals. Seriously though, what a wild imagination God has to have dreamed up all these funny looking creatures! And then there is humankind, which he made in his own image, to know him and be known by him. The Holy Spirit is the most interesting, vibrant, joy-filled, creative, smart, artistic, imaginative, trustworthy, honest, most loving companion we could ever have. We would be so mistaken to set our hearts on anything else. Here's to stoking the appetite for more of him!

God, we are so hungry for you. We long to know you more and more. Our souls are not satisfied apart from you! Lord, would you give us more hunger for your presence. Put within us a passion for your presence, a fire that cannot be put out. We want to experience the absolute delight of having a friend like you. You say that the hungry will be filled, God. We thank you for filling us without limit!

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