Posts tagged ‘hunger’

Jan 19 2011

Dissatisfaction

One of the things I see throughout John Robert Stevens’ written word is his constant determination to reach into the next thing God had for him.

The unfortunate side effect of living that kind of lifestyle is a nearly-consistent feeling of dissatisfaction.

I might have broached this topic before, but since it had recently come up for me personally, I thought I might write about it again. This dissatisfaction is something I had been feeling in my relationship with God, but I couldn’t point to anything that was “wrong.” There was no difficult situation that was getting me down. Finally, I realized that I was just hungering after more of God!

In a message called Contented or Discontented? Stevens read out of Philippians, and then wrote:

Press in—press in—press in—is the emphasis. You cannot be happy with what you have attained spiritually; there must be hunger in your heart. You will not attain more spiritually if there is discontentment in your spirit. You will not be fruitful for the Lord if there is discontentment in your spirit.*

What an interesting dichotomy involved with having a relationship with the Lord. The only time we feel content is by doing the will of God. But the only way to get to that fulfillment day-by-day is to be constantly driven toward Him through an uncomfortable hunger.

So if you’ve been feeling a little discontentment recently, don’t blame your circumstances. See if there is something more that God has for you. He is the only thing that can change that deep dissatisfaction.

  • John Robert Stevens, "Contented or Discontented?" 1972
    John Robert Stevens, "Contented or Discontented?" 1972
    Excerpt from the This Week "Contented or Discontented" by John Robert Stevens, Copyright © 1972 by John Robert Stevens & The Living Word, a California non profit Corporation. Used by permission.

 

Aug 16 2010

John Robert Stevens’ Spiritual Hunger

I know I gave this quote from John a few months ago, but I was reading it again and had some further thoughts about it.

The first thing I ever knew [in God] was the old-fashioned tabernacles and the sawdust floor and all the red-hot potbellied stoves; we went through a winter of services every night. It was marvelous. Those were days when God met me and I found my heart reaching into Him. I can remember visiting a little tent meeting outside of town, and they were really holy rollers….

I was in that thing, carefully seeking the Lord, because I saw God in it: a little kid seeking God in that, because I loved Him and I wanted to serve Him. And I watched those other people do it; they’d all go home with sawdust in their hair. I can remember those days in which God began to open up a whole frontier. It was called “storefront religion,” because churches would not receive it, but they would rent a store building and they would preach the Word of the Lord.*

Gary Hargrave was telling me that during this time, John would pray all night long, seeking the Lord for the Holy Spirit, and then still have go to school the next day (and he was still a great student because he ended up graduating second in his class). That’s how hungry he was for the Lord.

The Bible is clear about the effectiveness of spiritual hunger: “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.” (Matthew 5:6)

While John found many fulfillments in his life, it’s pretty clear that his hunger for God was never satisfied. And when you read this Scripture carefully, you see that the person is being satisfied, not their hunger. This is how God functions, and John was the proof. Because God is determined to satisfy the hunger, no matter what we receive from the Lord we should never drop this basic hunger for Him.

Gary Hargrave told me another thing about John that relates to this. When John Stevens was traveling by train as an evangelist, he was so young that he would have to beg preachers to let him have a revival because he was so young. And all he wanted was to share the living experiences he’d had with God. Now that was a man who lived his life with a spiritual hunger.

As Gary Hargrave said to me about hunger: “It is John Robert Stevens 101.”

So today I’m asking myself this question: Am I hungry enough for God?

  • *John Robert Stevens, "The Sin of Not Loving Him More," 1982
    *John Robert Stevens, "The Sin of Not Loving Him More," 1982
    Excerpt from the This Week "The Sin of Not Loving Him More" by John Robert Stevens, Copyright © 1982 by The Living Word, a California non profit Corporation. Used by permission.