Are we hungry for God? What does God hunger look like?
During our recent visit into India, I saw what hunger for God looks like.
What did I see? I saw people walking to church, catching dirty and crowded buses, riding on bikes and motor bikes just to get into God’s house and they were happy to be there!
I saw people hurrying with their chores in the fields before the rains came, so they could get into God’s house.
I saw jubilant worship with only a set of drums and off key singing and all participated.
I saw people sitting on the floor for hours because all of the seats were filled, hanging onto every word spoken.
I saw women who could not read carrying their Bibles just to have them in their possession.
I saw people who didn’t seem to notice that there was no air conditioning in the hot and humid climate of the church, neither did it bother them when the power would go on and off.
I saw children of all ages sit through hours of ministry with little distraction and with no children or youth programs to take them away from their parents.
I saw people flock to the altar to receive what God had for them during times of ministry: salvation, the baptism of the Holy Spirit, healing…
Are we hungry for God?
I was told by my Indian pastor friend that many try to bring the lifeless Western Christianity into India, but they will not buy it.
Many will come and minister in the large cities where it is comfortable and convenient but do not want to go into the difficult places such as the villages and small towns.
Are we hungry for God?
We have become so accustomed to “fast food” Christianity that many never really develop a true hunger for God. We are fed a greasy doctrine that goes down easily and is tasteful and packaged attractively, but has no real substance.
And the result is that we have become fat, unhealthy and lethargic in our spiritual life. We live lives inconsistent with the Word of God and justify ourselves in the process and dare anyone to question our beliefs.
Unfortunately we can’t have it this way and enter into the Kingdom of God. Jesus said many will speak to Him of all the great deeds they have done for God, but He will reply “depart from Me, I never knew you.”
I believe this nation is in serious trouble with the way we have handled the gospel. We have been so blessed because our nation was founded on the principles of God and His Word, yet many are throwing away the source of the blessing.
We find ourselves debating worldly views such as same sex marriage, abortion, dress styles, etc. in the church. I read an article recently that was asking the question “how much cleavage is too much to show in church?” What a ridiculous question to “have” to ask Bible believers that love God and His Word, which clearly speaks of modesty in dress. But when the heart has been darkened, the attitudes of the world come into the church and these foolish questions are the result.
I realized in India that what we have in our country is a lot of excitement but no real hunger. There is a big difference! In a pleasure driven culture, we are moving from one exciting event to another…anything to keep us stimulated. We crave excitement and we have become fans and not players in our Christian walk. A fan only watches from the side lines and can leave anytime the game gets a little boring or slow. A fan makes very little investment and it requires no discipline to sit in the bleachers. But a player is different. A player pays a big cost to get onto the playing field. A player must possess discipline and a player is there throughout the full game. A player knows his position and sticks with it. And the player receives the greatest reward at the end of the game.
A person who is hungry for God is a player and not only a fan. A player thrives on being in the game, not watching from the side lines. Hungry people are players in God’s Kingdom.
The Kingdom of God is where God rules! The Word of God is the law of the Kingdom! The Spirit of God is our guide, teacher, counselor and companion.
Are you hungry for God?
I am praying for a deeper hunger for God and not organized church as we know it. They can co-exist if our priorities are right…God first!
Jesus cautioned the church of Ephesus in Rev. 2 of their loss of their first love. I believe that first love was their hunger for God. We can become so busy doing all of our religious activities that we leave no time to pursue God. We become masters of religious habit and even become enamored with religion as if it were another lover that has pulled us away from the One we are to love and serve. Can we honestly examine our hearts and answer the question “Am I Hungry for God?” I pray we can and will!