Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled – Matthew 5:6
Hunger is our friend. We’ve learned to approach it as a problem to solve instead of a highway to travel. The state of hunger flushes our bodies of impurities, produces in us clarity, discipline, lightness and energy… yes energy. Our hunger is a powerful catalyst for change in our life. We all wake up each morning with a hunger to connect, to be informed and to hear from God. A life hid in Christ is not just a neat turn of phrase; it’s a reality available to all of us. When Jesus speaks of a food you know not of He’s speaking of that very same blessing, that very same sustenance He talks about in Matthew 5:6. To hunger and to thirst is to endure what feels like emptiness while God works in us His transforming process. It is up to us to create the space in our crowded lives for the Divine presence of the Holy Spirit, to prioritize His presence in our day above all else.
I’ve heard it said that there are people who eat to live and there are people who live to eat. I clearly live in the latter group when it comes to my food. I’ve never forgotten to eat. When I hear people say something like ‘I haven’t eaten a thing today’ and its ten at night, I remain puzzled at how that is even possible! For too many years I hated myself for not being like the person who forgets to eat. How thin could I be if I could just ‘forget’ to eat? I forget everything else it seems without much difficulty, why not food? Well in my spiritual walk it’s just the opposite. I can easily forget about the banquet breakfast God has waiting for me in my quiet time while I sit there mindlessly snacking on the never ending drivel of information and entertainment resting in the palm of my hand! Of course the phone is a utility in our modern world, I get that, but it also has the power to usurp human connection and become a surrogate to real meaningful interaction with God, our families and with others. When I’m particularly attached to that device in the palm of my hand, I try to remember what I would see if I were looking in the palm of my Savior’s hand. And when I do that, it’s pretty easy to see if I’m honoring God or self in that moment.
It is a paradox. That is, to stay hungry to be filled. I desperately want all that Christ has for me and the hungrier I am for it the more blessed I am in it. Protect your hunger and the energy it contains in all areas of your life. Remember, your hunger serves a unique and transforming purpose that helps us, as the proverb goes, ‘wind ever upwards’. (Prov 15:24)