25 January, 2006

What Have You Been Eating?

I want to borrow part of a message I preached a couple of weeks ago for today’s topic.
The message was titled:
Getting Hungry For God.”

In the message, I posed the question: “How can we get, and stay hungry for more of God?”
I want to focus on just the first point of that message, because it seems as if the Holy Ghost just keeps bringing it up before me, and tonight I felt prompted to use it here in the Dawghowse as refresher for my church and hopefully some of you other folks out there can get something from it too.

It seems rather paradoxical, but the fact is, one way to get hungry is to eat right.
It is a fact that if you eat junk food a lot, you will crave more junk food. But if you begin to eat a proper balance of healthy foods, you will hunger for, even crave those foods.
With that in mind for our physical bodies, I am convinced that the same thing is true of our spiritual hunger.
We need to eat right!

As I have talked with people over the past couple of weeks since preaching this message, I have been keenly aware of what people are telling me they are feasting on.
I have had people telling me about the books they are reading/studying, or the movies they are watching, the television shows they have seen,… but almost NOBODY has mentioned something they read in the Word of God!

The problem is, so many Christians today fill up on “spiritual junk food” that we aren’t hungry for God!

We’ll talk for hours to a friend via e-mail or the telephone but we don’t have time to pray.
We’ll read the latest romance novel cover-to-cover or the entire sports section of the USA Today.
We’ll sit for hours in front of the TV set with never a complaint but it’s too much effort to get up and go sit in church for an hour and a half on Sunday morning.

I used this Illustration in my sermon. I talked about cookbooks… I have a whole slew of them. Betty Crocker, Better Homes and Garden, International, Mexican, German, Italian… I have a shelf full of them.
And yet… I find myself going to McDonald’s!

We’ve got all the recipes for spiritual growth right here with us in the Bible but we’re not hungry because we keep snacking on worldly junk food.

The Psalmist said, “O taste and see that the Lord is good.” – Psalm 34:8.
For the healthy Christian, there’s no substitute for the Word and prayer.
There are no shortcuts for those two things if you want to stay hungry.
But many of us have no room left over for God in our spiritual bellies because we’ve gorged ourselves on things like gossip magazines and daytime soap operas.
We know more about the latest websites than we do about the Word.
Or we listen to the latest, hottest “fad” preacher; the one everyone else says to listen to or to read, but we never get into the Word for ourselves.

Everyday God spreads out a smorgasbord before us but we’re not hungry because we’ve been stuffing ourselves with spiritual cotton candy.
We have no appetite left for God.
Our lives are filled with so many things and yet, many Christians know full well that they are spiritually malnourished.
The sinful condition of their private lives is proof.

Ask yourself this question: Have you given as much attention to the Word of God today as you have reading this blog? (OUCH!)

Again… If you want to develop a hunger for the good stuff, you have to make yourself start eating it. It takes some real effort at first, but once you do, and you start getting it into you, and letting it become a part of you…
You’ll find yourself craving for more!

Just a suggestion… If you want to have a radically changed life… try studying the books of 1,2, and 3 John. You will find them to be packed with love and practical power for daily living.


Amy said...

very good word pastor,"" ouch"" is right!!!(im going to pray and read my bible and spend time with my Lord,RIGHT NOW.) GBU!!


michigan preacher said...

Hey, Darrell, I've always loved the junk food analogy. Great message, and a good challenge to me.

Neil said...

I really love the illustration, might even use it myself...but my heart is heavy over you having a slew of cookbooks! Just kidding! Whenever I'm on an extended fast I look up recipies online...never use them...just like to see what I would eat if I could!

I always tell people that I didn't get fat like I am by eating healthy...neither do people get spiritually health by eating junk, there's a difference between bulk and bulge!


Libby said...

Bro. Betzer(?) says, "the fat belongs to the Lord so you skinny people are greiving the Holy Spirit!" I think I quoted him right.