TODAY'S WORD FOR Monday, February 18, 2019:
The compelling need or desire for food; the painful sensation or state of weakness caused by the need of food.
He upholds the cause of the oppressed and gives food to the hungry.
I was hungry and you gave me food. I was thirsty and you gave me drink.
And He fills the hungry soul with goodness.
A righteous man ... gives his food to the hungry and provides clothing for the naked.
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE:
Since 1961 we have been involved with ministries that have dealt with spiritual and physical hunger. How do you react when you see or talk to a hungry person who is hungry both spiritually and physically?
Have you talked to a spiritually hungry person who was searching for peace and a relationship with God? Let us assure you that it is one of the great thrills of life, to be used by God to lead that person to a personal relationship with Jesus. Then the spiritual hunger for this person is satisfied for a life time as he has Christ in his heart.
Dealing with physical hunger is an entirely different situation. Someone once said that you can feed a person a meal and in a few days he will be hungry again. But you can teach that person to fish and he can provide himself food for a lifetime.
But the real truth is that in most areas of our world where hunger is a problem it cannot be solved by giving fishing lessons.
As Christians we have some lessons to learn about hunger. In the scriptures there are many references to hunger --- both spiritual hunger and physical hunger.
When we talk about spiritual hunger God expects us as Christians to be ready in season and out of season to "preach the gospel." (II Timothy 4:2) God wants us to walk the walk and talk the talk every moment of every day being an example to all that see us. He also expects us to show others that we love and serve the Lord so that those that are spiritually hungry will come to us. Peter instructs us who are followers of Jesus to always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope (your salvation) that you have.
As for physical hunger, we have the responsibility to do all we can to meet the needs of those that are hungry. We are to give food to those who need food, give drink to those who are thirsty, give clothes to those that need cover and to do all that we can to help people who are physically hungry. But you may then ask --- where do I begin because the needs are so many. Yes, the needs are many but we must not use that as our excuse to do nothing. No one person can do it all. What the Lord asks of us is that we do what we can, each one according to the ability and gifts He has given us.
We read in Matthew 15:32 that Jesus called His disciples to Him and said: "I have compassion for these people; because they have already been with me three days and have had nothing to eat. I do not want to send them away hungry, as they may collapse on the way."
For three days Jesus had been teaching and healing a multitude of spiritually hungry people, but Jesus not only saw their spiritual hunger, He saw their physical hunger.
The disciples could only come up with seven loaves of bread and a few small fish. Jesus performed a miracle and multiplied the loaves and fish so that 4000 people could eat. And after they had all eaten all they could, there were seven baskets left over.
Jesus cares not only about our spiritual hunger but also our physical hunger. Jesus uses us to care for others both spiritually and physically.
Just as Jesus did not want to send the people who were seeking Him away hungry, 2000 years ago, He does not want any to go away hungry today.
Our memory verse for this week is found in Psalm 32:7.
You are my hiding place; You shall preserve me from trouble; You shall surround me with songs of deliverance. Selah
Thank You, dear Lord, for all that You have blessed me with this day. Give me a sensitive heart today for those that are hungry both spiritually and physically. Enable me to be aware of opportunities to feed those who are hungry, whether it is hunger for spiritual food or for physical food.
These Family Devotional thoughts are written by Dr. Ken Phillips, Executive Director of America's Hunger
Solution, and his wife Dottie. Ken has had ministry positions
with The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, World Vision, Youth For Christ, World Opportunities International,
and World Bible Society. He also has consulted for more than 30 Christian ministries in management and stewardship
development. They have published a book called No Problems Only Situations that discusses the journey of their family.
Ken and Dottie have been married for 60 years, and have 6 children, 20 grandchildren, and 3 great grandchildren. Their
second book, TODAY'S WORD, includes 365 daily
devotionals and is now available for only $10.
Ken & Dottie Phillips
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