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pray_hands.GIF (680 bytes) Prayer & Spirituality
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Father, Son, and Holy Spirit

Hunger of the Spirit

by Dr. George Jacob, Ph.D

"These wait all upon thee; that thou mayest give them their meat in due season.  That thou givest them they gather: thou openest thine hand, they are filled with good." PSA 104:27.

It is as true spiritually as naturally that we must wait upon the Lord for life, breath, and food.  We are unable to quicken either others or ourselves.  If you do not understand what I mean, wait until you have a child who is walking in the things of death and try to quicken him.  You will find that it takes grace.  It is impossible for us to bring life into one who is spiritually dead.  We must wait upon the Lord on our knees, begging and beseeching that He will bring life, breath, and food.  We cannot give a spiritual blessing to our own souls, but must wait upon the Lord to give that blessing in due season. 

"These wait all upon thee; that thou mayest give them their meat in due season."  We do not always receive the blessing when we would like to have it, or when we think it is best, but when it is the Lord's time, which is always the right time.

MAT 6:26 says, "Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them.  Are ye not much better than they?"  Since we bear the image of God, the Lord values us more.  We are not better in the sense of holier, but more valuable because we are created to reflect the image of God, though we have lost that in the fall.

Do we wait upon God only intellectually or also consciously?  Do we wait upon the Lord for a blessing only because we are unable to get that blessing in our own time?

Until God quickens the soul, there is no spiritual understanding of waiting upon God for spiritual "meat."  A person who has not been quickened spiritually has no hunger or thirst for spiritual things. Their hearts hunger and thirst for the things of this earth.  JOH 3:6 says, "That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit."  After spiritual birth, there are spiritual cravings, hungers, and desires.  ROM 8:5 says, "For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit."  They wait upon the Lord for their "meat in due season" only after He quickens them and shows them the emptiness of the flesh.

In the state of spiritual death, all the cravings and desires are after the things of this life.  1PE 4:2-3 tells us, "That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.  For the time past of our life may suffice us to have wrought the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries."  We have no desire, hunger, or thirst after righteousness, because we are feeding upon the husks of the swine. (In Scripture, swine is a type of the unregenerate.) 

In the beginning of His ministry, the Lord Jesus Christ used spiritual hunger as one of the first signs of spiritual life.  Hunger is a sign of good health.  An unhealthy person will not care for food.  If they are nauseated, they will not eat. If we have been laboring under the load of sin, we will hunger and thirst after righteousness.  Jesus taught in MAT 5:6, "Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled."  Our text says, "These wait all upon thee; that thou mayest give them their meat in due season."  You may not have been fed yet, but an appetite is a healthy sign.  As in natural birth, so in spiritual birth: a healthy appetite accompanies new life.

Jesus likened the beginning of spiritual life to a man who spent all his money on worldly pleasures before coming to his senses.  He said in LUK 15:14-17, "And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want.  And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine.  And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him." 

The Lord used a natural famine to bring that man to himself.  The Prodigal wanted to survive, so in his own strength he tried to make his own way.  This often happens spiritually.  When sin is no longer enjoyable, many people will take drugs or liquor to numb their minds, satisfy, calm them, or give them a state of contentment just as the Prodigal looked for satisfaction by going out to the fields to feed the swine. 

He finally saw his poverty.  In a spiritual sense, we must see that our best righteousness is nothing but filthy rags.  We cannot feed on intellect, anything of the world, or anything of ourselves.  We can only feed on the blessed manna that comes from heaven, which is the only suitable food.  The Prodigal was not satisfied with the worldly husks. He did not want more money to go out after more riotous living; he had received a new appetite for the bread of his father's house.  That is a sign of spiritual life. 

LUK 15:17 says, "And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father's have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!"  He came to his senses and saw that his hunger could only be satisfied with the bread of his father's house, so he stopped trying to satisfy it with anything else.  We will hunger after the kingdom of heaven when we have spent all of our righteousness.  A sure mark of spiritual quickening is a hunger after heavenly food, which is Christ, "The bread of life," JOH 6:35. 

When the soul becomes sick of sin and self and becomes hungry and thirsty for Christ, he is waiting upon God for "meat."  This puts us in a spiritual posture of waiting upon the Lord for heavenly manna.  Our text says God has appointed to give this "meat" at a "due season."  It wasn't until after the Prodigal could no longer eat the husks of the swine that the father said, "Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet: And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry," LUK 15:22-23.  The father did not give him the best robe while he was still feeding the swine, nor did he kill the fatted calf just because he was hungry. He did not give additional funds for the boy to go out and spend in the world, but he waited until he saw him returning.  The Lord has a purpose for creating this hunger in our soul: He wants us to come to Him; He wants our hearts to return to Him.  He prepares a blessed feast in due season, after there is repentance, remorse, and turning from sin.

In "due season" the Lord feeds a hungry soul.  A full soul will loathe the honeycomb.  If you have just finished a meal at the nicest place uptown, you may be offered the most scrumptious food, but it will not attract you because you are full.  The Lord will not place the heavenly manna, the Bread of Life, in front of someone who is not hungry because it would be a waste.  However, when you come home from work after struggling and laboring all day in the heat, you are hungry, and to a hungry soul even a bitter thing is sweet.  Trials and tribulations become sweet because we see that the Lord uses them to make us ready for a blessing in due season.

Source: MOSC Forum

See Also:

Being Faithful Is Not Easy
While it may seem easy to be in faith , yet for the faith to be at work is daunting.

There is a level of "seeing" or "watching" that God wants to bring us to in these last days - a level that is necessary in order to survive and conquer the devices and schemes of the enemy.

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