There is an old French proverb that says, “A good meal ought to begin with hunger.” It is hard to enjoy a good meal when you are not hungry, but when you are starving anything tastes good! But when a person has a real appetite or thirst they become consumed with having that longing and craving satisfied.
Concerning hunger and thirst, Christ said In the Beatitudes,, “Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness…” Let me ask you this question. “How is your spiritual appetite?” Do you have a genuine hunger and a true thirst for righteousness?
To be hungry is not enough; I must be really starving to know what is in [God’s] heart towards me. When the prodigal son was hungry he went to feed upon husks, but when he was starving, he turned to his father. When you have that kind of desperation, only God can satisfy it!
It is possible to maintain a spiritual hunger for God for the rest of your life. Here are five ways to keep a spiritual appetite.
1. Remind yourself how much God loves you.
The more you understand how much God loves you, the more you’re going to love him. The Bible says in Ephesians 3:18-19, “May you have the power to understand … how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God” (NLT, second edition).
2. Stop filling up on junk food.
You are a spiritual being with a God-shaped hole in your heart that only God can fill. When you try to fill it with salary, status, success, passion, possessions, power, prestige, or anything other than God, it’s not going to be fulfilling.
Proverbs 15:14 says, “A wise person is hungry for knowledge, while the fool feeds on trash.”
3. Make knowing God your number one goal.
Happiness is a byproduct of knowing God. Jesus says in Matthew 6:33, “Seek first God’s kingdom and what God wants. Then all your other needs will be met as well” (NCV).
4. Get into God’s Word every day.
The Bible is food for your soul. Eating a meal once a week won’t keep you healthy. In the same way, you need to feed on God’s Word every day.
“You must crave pure spiritual milk so that you will grow into a full experience of salvation. Cry out for this nourishment” (1 Peter 2:2 NLT, second edition).
5. Appetite is influenced by association.
If you hang out with people who only care about politics, that’s all you’re going to care about. If you hang out with people who only care about sports, that’s what you’re going to care about.
Join a small group for support, because whatever you talk about when you’re with others is what you’re going to be hungry for. Proverbs 2:20 says, ”Join the company of good men and women, and stay on the paths of the righteous” (MSG/NLT, second edition).
Ask God to use the events of today to increase your hunger and thirst for righteousness. Look to Him in all things, knowing that He alone can satisfy.