Do you remember when you first got saved? Do you remember the overwhelming feeling of love? The hunger so deep for more of Him?I do. I was 16 and life as normal took a VERY dramatic shift. Instead of parties I wanted to read the Word on my back porch at night for hours. Instead of eagerly expecting my next sports game I was ready for the next church service. Instead of pondering all day about whatever guy I thought was cute or I was interested in I was meditating on the scriptures I'd been reading. Instead of engaging in unusually filthy conversation, I was trying to find out how to get people to accept Jesus.
I. was. hungry.
I'm reading a book about John G Lake for our summer homework. I read a sermon of his on hunger two days ago and it has shook me to my core. I wish I could type up the whole thing and put it here, but I'll include a clip.
"Here is what I want you to get. If it was going to come to pass mechanically on a certain date, there would not have been any necessity for Daniel to get that awful hunger in his soul, so that he fasted and prayed in sackcloth and ashes, that the deliverance might come... No difference what it may be your soul is coveting or desiring if it becomes in your life the supreme cry, not the secondary matter, or third or fourth... but the first thing, the supreme desire of your soul; the paramount issue, all the powers and energies of your spirit, of your soul, of your body are reaching out and crying to God for the answer, IT IS GOING TO COME, IT IS GOING TO COME, IT IS GOING TO COME" - JOHN G LAKE
"Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness for they shall be filled"
When I first went to Africa I saw a few miracles I'd never seen before, after I had tasted a little, I was craving much, all I wanted to do was get back to where the miracles happened. I took a few more trips and began to learn that God wanted to do the same thing in America. Two years later I went to Pemba, Mozambique where Iris Ministries is based. Everyday we were seeing TONS of miracles, a baby was raised from the dead, blind eyes were opening, deaf ears were hearing, people were getting out of wheel chairs. It left me so hungry I felt like I'd die if I didn't continue to see God work that way. Then I went to DRC I walked into a church service that left me crying in the dirt for over an hour because the presence of God was thicker than I had ever felt in my life. I remember crying and vectoring my spiritual mom, how do you leave this? How do you taste such a strong Presence and walk away, He has to come where I am. My hunger was deepened for more. Then I came out to Redding. We see more miracles in one week here then some people see in an entire lifetime. The presence overwhelms us often. I'll be on my back laughing or on my face crying on any given day to be honest. The worship is always powerful, the message is always revelatory, and if for some reason you hadn't seen God do a miracle through your own hands that week you could just show up at the healing rooms on Saturday morning and you'd see more than enough. But day in and day out miracles and even the Presence can become the norm. You can begin to take it for granted. You can lose the awe and the wonder of who God is. The Great Miracle Worker. You can actually come to a place where it simply takes more to Astonish you.
"If you wanted to confer a peculiar blessing on men at large, it would not be to give them pie, but to make them hungry, and then everything that came their way would taste everlastingly good." - John G Lake
As I stated in the previous blogs, God began doing something different around here. The last two Sundays have been remarkably eye opening. God started working in my heart a few weeks ago. He was cultivating in me a hunger, a deep deep hunger. In the middle of the night last night I woke up to myself dreaming of me crying out, "GOD I MUST HAVE MORE OF YOU". I realized then that this hunger was growing deep inside my spirit, soul, and body.
The basics of who we are is found in hunger. God is our Need. God is our Desire. He is the Savior of the world. The provider. The Restorer. The Lover. The Friend. The Guide. The Teacher. The Counselor. The Father. He's the All Sufficient One.
Life can bring us to a place where that hunger isn't so life altering anymore. Perhaps we've allowed pieces of other things to take it's place. The job that gives the paycheck. The spouse that gives love. The friend that has a listening ear. The "title" that gives honor. The peers that give affirmation. One by one we allow other things and people to slightly satisfy the True desire of our hearts when sadly they're only temporary fillers.
Working a job for a paycheck, having a spouse that displays the love of God, having a friend who is a friend at all times, titles, etc. none of those things are evil. They're just not to be our Source. True hunger can only be satisfied by the One and when He shows up parts of you are fulfilled that you didn't even know you were lacking.
It's not a part time Gospel, He's not a part time God. The price Jesus paid wasn't just to stamp your forehead and get you into heaven, you were made for so much more. Be Blessed, J. Tate