Feeding Spiritual Hunger

Spiritual Hunger.  It’s not all that different from physical hunger.

When our bodies are hungry, we may feel weak or have a slight headache.  We have grumbling stomachs, growling and urging us to find something to satisfy.  We may become more easily frustrated, quick to snip or snap at others, and just feel pretty miserable when we are truly needing to feed our bodies.

Our soul is very much the same.  We need to pray and commune with our Heavenly Father.  We need to feed on the Word of God to allow Him to satisfy our soul hunger.  We need solid, Bible-centered teaching that will fill our minds with TRUTH. We need fellowship with other believers for encouragement, edification, and, yes, even reproof or correction at times.

What happens when we don’t have these sources of nourishment for our soul? Like our physical signs of hunger, our spiritual hunger results in weakness, aches of the heart, grumbling, growling and the urges to find satisfaction.  It can fill us with frustration and anger and misery.  Loneliness, uncertainty, fear and anger creep in.

Ultimately, when we don’t nourish ourselves physically, we can die.  When we don’t nourish our spirit and soul, we will also end up spiritually “dead”–dry, ineffective, broken and bearing no fruit.

Sounds like a dangerous place to be.  I pray that I never get so spiritually malnourished that I find myself in that spot.  We have to find ways to feed ourselves spiritually.  In full-time ministry, where we don’t consistently get a “Sunday Morning Meal” of worship, preaching and fellowship in our home church body, we have to make the effort to bring these things into our lives by purposefully seeking out sound Bible teaching, personal quiet times, and fellowship with other believers. It is not an easy task.

It’s all part of growing.  Working in full-time ministry has amazing blessings, but it also has its own set of difficulties. We will just keep moving forward and trusting the Lord to meet all of these needs.  What do you do to keep yourself spiritually “full?”

Stop Thinking, Start Doing

I’ve had blogging on my mind for a few days and just felt the urge to come back to my blog to share a thought or two.  Life is too chaotic for me to blog regularly, and I am too hard on myself if I fail to blog as often as I think I should, etc.  I won’t promise that I’ll be back for any regular posts or that I will even be able to finish a complete sentence the way my thinking is most of the time, but I am promising that I am going to STOP just thinking about it and START writing something.

Recently I read a blog post that drew my attention to the fact that I am really slacking when it comes to spending time reading the Bible and really nurturing my relationship with God.  I  wish I could remember which blog or where I read the post, but it has escaped me.  That’s what I get for not pinning it or bookmarking it.

The point is: I am tired.  I am worn.  I am stressed out all of the time.  I need stress relief and I need ways to relax and find peace with our current chaotic life.  I cannot do this on my own human strength.  I know that the source of this supernatural peace is God.  He can somehow give me what I need to handle ten kids and a household and a job that really requires more of me than I feel that I have to give.  He sees all of this chaos and stress and still calls out for me to “Be Still.”

I get so stuck in my head.  So stuck in my thinking.  I can’t live in this state of mind anymore. I have to stop thinking and start living. I need to start doing the things I know He is calling me to do.  That starts with the basics of reading the Word and prayer…and, for me, writing.  Whether it’s a blog post or a handwritten journal, an email or a letter, I need to put thoughts into words, even if no one else ever reads them.

Here’s to my renewed effort to stop thinking and start doing.  Whatever it is that He calls me to do.

Love Big

As I had my quiet time this morning, I was praying about how we are called to love.  We aren’t called to just the “warm fuzzy” feelings of love.  We aren’t called to a “fly by night” fleeting kind of love.  We aren’t called to an “on-again-off-again” kind of love.  We are called to a sold-out, full-on, deeper than deep, wider than wide, BIGGER THAN BIG kind of love! The only way to have this kind of love flow from within us into the lives of others is to have ourselves be filled with it from the ONLY SOURCE of this kind of love, our Father God, our “Abba Father,” our Heavenly Daddy.  We cannot possibly pour BIG love out of our hearts if we aren’t seeking to have them filled by the ONE who gives love UNCONDITIONALLY.

It has become my prayer that I would be able to love others with HIS perfect love.  My human kind of love fails every day.  HIS love is perfect.  His love is BIGGER than all that might come up against it.  What would happen if we would all begin to seek Him for this kind of love to flow into our lives and then pour that love into the lives of others?  Our homes, our families, our churches, our communities, and our WORLD would be changed forever.  HIS LOVE IS BIG…let it be the love we seek in our lives and the love we seek to give to others so the we can LOVE BIG!

My prayer for you is from 1 Thessalonians 3:12, “May the Lord make your love INCREASE AND OVERFLOW for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you.”

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Quiet

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Quiet. It’s illusive. Absent, even, in today’s fast-paced, information-overloaded society.  I’m growing more and more hungry for peace and quiet.  I need time for my brain to process all that is thrown at me on any given day.  It’s hard to step away from the busy-ness and the needs around me, but I have to learn how to do it.  I need AIR to breathe for fear of feeling suffocated under the strain of the demands of life.

Soaking up the quiet (a relative term in my crazy household) is like inhaling slowly and deeply to have enough breath to step out and exhale for the next tasks that I must handle.  And I must repeat the process as often as I can to keep moving forward. My quiet time can be spent praying and journaling, blogging, reading the Bible, surfing the internet, knitting/crocheting, or any other number of activities.  As long as I am alone and still.  I just snuck away for 30 minutes of “quiet” while the rest of my household finishes up a movie they are watching.  I SOOOOOO needed that. I now have the air I need to go out of my quiet place and finish the evening by tucking everyone into bed.  I’m so thankful for these moments to breathe deeply and the air to go on.

What do you do that feeds your soul?  How do you get enough air to breathe?