Hungry?  Feed Yourself!

11 “Behold, days are coming,” declares the Lord God, “When I will send a famine on the land, Not a famine for bread or a thirst for water, But rather for hearing the words of the Lord. 12 “People will stagger from sea to sea And from the north even to the east; They will go to and fro to seek the word of the Lord, But they will not find it. 13 “In that day the beautiful virgins And the young men will faint from thirst. – Amos 8:11-13

Observation

The parties were no longer fun. The songs were no longer flowing. The food tasted flat. The drink no longer flavorful. The very thing the people of God had taken for granted was now all they wanted. Yet, as judgment for their worship of other gods, the word of the Lord was now out of reach. Even the young people were weary and giving up. Sure they could feed the cravings of their flesh, but nothing was touching the craving of their soul. They still had all their other escapes, plenty of options to worship at the feet of what ever pleasure they felt like pursuing, but they realized a terrible truth: Nothing else will satisfy in this world until we choose to be satisfied by nothing less then the Word of the Lord.

Application

I had the joy of attending my new church, New Hope Legacy, a week before I am officially the Senior Pastor. I came in with my family and we were warmly embraced by the people of God seeking the presence of God to fulfill the purposes of God in that place! During worship God spoke a strong word to my spirit over and over again and the word was “Hunger”. Following the worship the youth group was invited on to the stage to tell of their recent youth retreat. It quickly became clear why God had given me that word. The young people, ranging from Jr. High through High School, spoke of how God had “filled their empty buckets to overflowing” in a way that truly changed them from the inside out. They didn’t have all the snacks they were used to at home. They didn’t have access to any social media or entertainment. They worked hard in helping the workers in the Waipio Valley taro fields picking weeds. Though they had none of the comforts of home I could see they were filled to overflowing with the Word of the Lord. In fact not only did God minister to them, He ministered through them! Fifteen youth received Christ as their Lord and Savior over the course of Survivor Camp and a number of the farm’s employees came to know Christ after spending this time with them! I realized that the youth here at New Hope Legacy epitomized that hunger God was talking to me about. They were not hungry for a move of man, but rather a move of God! They were choosing not to fill themselves with what their generation craved. They were leading the way for us adults to realize that the only thing that really matters is feeding ourselves on the Word of the Lord daily. There is no substitute for being in His Holy Word and hearing His still small voice. The youth of New Hope Legacy reminded me of the fact that no one can hear God for me or read scripture for me. I must refuse to allow anything of this world to distract me from what God is saying today, right now, in this moment! Then, to wake up this morning and find that today’s Life Journal reading includes this passage from the book of Amos drives home the point all the more! If I’m hungry for more then a move of man it’s time to feed myself on the Words of the Lord.

Prayer

I repent Lord for filling myself on the things of the world before filling myself on the Truth of Your Word. In all of this transition to a new state, a new church, a new home, a new way of life I have not been hiding myself in You. I feel it. That gnawing hunger to know what You are saying in this new season can only be filled by the words from Your mouth and Your Word. No one else can hear You for me. Fill this empty bucket to overflowing as You have done in the lives of these young people. There is a famine in this land for the Word of the Lord, but I can’t share what I myself haven’t yet received. I hold to Your promise today “How blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisfied.” -Matthew 5:6

A Word For New Hope Legacy:

If you are sensing a famine in the land for the Word of the Lord let me encourage you to not wait until summer is over. It’s only natural to go into maintenance mode during this season, but I want to challenge you to look at it a little differently this year. If it’s true that nothing else will satisfy in this world until we choose to be satisfied by nothing less then the Word of the Lord, then that’s where we should start. We could very well end up with the best summer ever because we are putting Him first before all of our other pursuits!

Here are 3 simple and yet powerful ways to join in me in a summer self-feeding challenge:

  • Don’t Miss A Sunday
    • Starting this Sunday I will be kicking off a brand new sermon series entitled “Come Together”. We will be looking at how God brought a destitute, divided, different, and downcast people together to accomplish the impossible- the rebuilding of the walls of Jerusalem in the Book of Nehemiah. In the process we will learn that unity is about more then just being in the same room at the same time. It’s about sacrificing our lives for Christ & each other to build something that will outlast us all.
  • Join A Life Group
    • We have a number of great Life Group’s going on throughout the week in the mornings and evenings that you can check out on our website Life Group Calendar. If none of these times work for you I’d love to show you how to start up your own. It’s hands down one of the most life changing spiritual disciplines in my Christian walk. Want to know more? Just email me at Jon@NewHopeLegacy.com
  • Consider Water Baptism
    • This is an outward sign of an inward work! It’s an opportunity to make a public profession of your faith in Christ who has brought you from death to life. We are having one this August 10th after Sunday Celebration and it would be my privilege to participate in this with you! For more information you can check out our website right here New Hope Legacy Water Baptism.