Monday, March 28, 2011


What kind of spiritual eating habits do you have? Do you nibble little bites of God’s Word here and there as your time “permits?” Or do you keep nibbling until you’re filled and satisfied? Perhaps you gobble your daily Word in quick bites without savoring the flavor and texture. We probably all should review our spiritual eating habits, making necessary changes in order to feast on God’s rich and nourishing Word—His table banquet.


Hunger Pains

The deer look healthy this winter. Some days they merely nibble at my meager offerings of food, going instead to the nutritious cedar leaves and wild shrub tips to get their sustenance. I don’t imagine there are many starving deer around our area.

Most of us in America have enough to eat, too. But there are those who do go hungry, and their hunger pains are real. If they don’t receive nourishing food, they end up suffering disease or even death. The problem of hunger across the globe is huge. As concerned Christians, we can give money or food items to help supply a starving world.

Hunger pains come in different forms. There’s the gut-wrenching pain from lack of food; there’s also the pain of disease that comes from poor nourishment.

Spiritual hunger can cause pain, too. Jesus said, “I am the bread of life. Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and are dead. This is the bread which comes down from heaven, that one may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread that I shall give is My flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world.” (John 6:48-51)

When we partake of His Word, our whole being fills with nourishment that gives us strength, power, and life. Our spiritual meals must be eaten daily just as our food meals are eaten. As a Christian sister from my church explained, we wouldn’t want to eat an unhealthful meal at a fast-food restaurant before going to Grandma’s house for a home-cooked feast. Think about it. We’d be too full of junk food to enjoy the good stuff. We’d disappoint Grandma, hurting ourselves and her, for turning down the food she’d spent hours preparing.

When we don’t eat the right foods, our stomachs hurt. When we don’t eat of God’s nourishing Word, our souls hurt.

Lord, give us a gut-wrenching hunger every day for Your Word and Spirit. Help us to remember that Your food is what will keep us spiritually strong and powerful. May Your life-giving food in us draw others to You. And may we never forget to help the truly hungry—not only with food but with the Bread of Life. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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