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I’m not hungry for dinner – I just finished eating. I’m spiritually hungry. But I’m not hungry for signs and wonders. I’m not hungry to feel good. I’m not hungry to learn something new. I’m hungry for reality. I’m emaciated of God.
It’s nobody’s fault but my own. I live in a hyperactive society and am a child of my culture. I’m single, constantly on the go, busy enough to track my calendar online, and continually jumping back and forth between tasks. Boy, I sure must be important! But here’s the rub.
I live on spiritual TV dinners
It’s not that I don’t know how to “prepare a meal” or how important it is that I feed on the word of God. In fact, I continually encourage others to do that very thing…while I often fail to do it myself.
We live in a society choking on quick devotionals, topic-specific Bibles, prerecorded worship, and scripted prayers.
All of those things are wonderful and have their place. They’re real. They’re resources. But many times they’re TV dinners – prepackaged spiritual meals that work well in a pinch but were never intended to be the staple of our spiritual diet. Or worse, they may be leftover baby food that we’re still eating as spiritual toddlers, adolescents and adults. They may be balanced. They may or may not be age-appropriate. But they’re certainly not the same as a well-prepared meal. They’re often not as healthy, seldom as tasty, and we usually use them so that we don’t have to do the work of preparing our own meals.
Christianity was never intended to be a “one size fits all” religion. God wants a relationship with us: his creation, his people.
I remember my mother cooking pot roasts when I was growing up – especially on Sundays. It was a family affair and often shared with other families as well. My mom would take some meat, some vegetables, potatoes, spices, and such and put all of them in a pot (I think that’s why it’s called a pot roast). Apply some heat and allow time and heat to do their job to make a delectable meal.
There were a few things we were required to do and and some we could not do before a meal.
- We had to wash our hands
- We had to get up to the table
- We were expected to eat what was put in front of us
- We had to offer thanks for what we were about to eat
- We were NOT allowed to “ruin our appetites” by eating candy, dessert, or even part of the meal early
Those are just a few of the “rules”.
Yet I fail to do even that spiritually
I enter God’s presence in whatever condition I’m in with little thought to what that condition actually is, step in quickly, sit down and eat with hardly a word, and often leave without saying “thank you”. Further, I often fill my belly with candy and desserts before I even think about getting ready to eat.
It’s time for a change in my life. It’s time to start preparing meals. I already know how to prepare them. I just don’t.
What makes a good, balanced spiritual meal?
This could get into an extremely lengthy discussion of spiritual disciplines, but that is not my intention. I’d like to focus on four main components to a balanced meal. For now, I’m discussing the meal of a mature believer, not a baby Christian who can only take in milk and “processed” food.
Tune in next time when we look at some of the ingredients of a quality spiritual meal.