3/26 Daily in the Word

Blessed when Hungry
by Dr. Paul Chappell

"Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled."

Constantly strive to become closer to God than you were yesterday.

Have you ever hungered so badly for something you would've done anything to get it? Often I hear of people who don't have a certain restaurant near them so they'll travel great distances or pay high shipping costs to obtain that food. To understand this type of hunger, think of the story of Jacob and Esau in Genesis 25:29-34:

And Jacob sod pottage: and Esau came from the field, and he was faint: And Esau said to Jacob, Feed me, I pray thee, with that same red pottage; for I am faint: therefore was his name called Edom. And Jacob said, Sell me this day thy birthright. And Esau said, Behold, I am at the point to die: and what profit shall this birthright do to me? And Jacob said, Swear to me this day; and he sware unto him: and he sold his birthright unto Jacob. Then Jacob gave Esau bread and pottage of lentiles; and he did eat and drink, and rose up, and went his way: thus Esau despised his birthright.

Esau was so consumed with hunger that he sold his birthright for a bowl of pottage. He didn't care what it took to get the pottage; he was focused on one thing-quenching his hunger. While the story has a sad side to it (Esau's sale of his birthright), the picture of hunger here is what is to be noticed. Esau so hungered after sustenance that he was focused on satisfying that hunger.

Christ told His disciples in Matthew 5:6, "Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled." To hunger and thirst after something is not merely to desire something, but to crave it, to be so passionate about obtaining it that it dominates your thoughts.

Imagine a traveler lost in the Sahara Desert. He is alone, with few supplies, and running out of water. After a few days of wandering, he is sunburned, tired, exhausted, weak, hungry, and thirsty. I'm sure he desires to see his family. He may want to return to his home, and he may even badly need to find relief for his sunburn. But after a few days without water, he desperately craves even a few drops of water to quench his thirst.

When was the last time you hungered after godliness so much that it dominated your thoughts? How badly do you want to know God, to grow closer to Him? God offers you the ability to draw close to Him. He gives you the way to do so by saying, "Hunger after Me. Be so intent on knowing Me that I am always on your mind."

Hungering after God means you are consumed with knowing God more. You make time to study His Word. You are constantly talking with Him, seeking His help, and conversing with your Heavenly Father. You don't want anything to get in the way of growing closer to God.

Do you thirst after righteousness? Are you passionate about strengthening your relationship with God? God promises that as you faithfully seek Him, He will fill you and will draw you to Himself. Unlike other deities, God opens His throne to you and invites you to seek Him. He delights when you passionately follow Him.

Ask God to give you a hunger and thirst for righteousness. Ask Him to stir a desire inside you to know Him more. Don't allow complacency and routine to dampen your thirst for the things of God. Always strive to grow closer to God than you were yesterday.

To learn more about the ministries of Lancaster Baptist Church and Pastor Chappell, please visit lancasterbaptist.org, paulchappell.com, or follow him on twitter.

Daily Bible Reading
Joshua 22-24 | Luke 3

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