8 Minute Read

Be Still

To the best of your ability, get rid of all distractions. Take a couple of minutes to breathe deeply, to quiet yourself in the Lord’s presence. Then, prayerfully ask the Lord to speak to you in this time and let Him know that you will be listening and will make whatever adjustments He will reveal to you.

Today’s Bible Reading:

Ezekiel 16:42–17:24
Hebrews 8:1-13
Psalm 106:13-31
Proverbs 27:7-9

Listen to the Lord

Slowly and reflectively read the following verses and listen to what God will say to you through them. Then, consider writing down any insights He reveals to you.

Proverbs 27:7 (NLT): “A person who is full refuses honey, but even bitter food tastes sweet to the hungry.”

Reflections from Scripture:

If we have just gorged ourselves on a large Thanksgiving dinner and someone offers us another slice of delicious pumpkin pie, we may groan. However, it would absolutely not taste good in our mouth.

Yet, as a child, I will never forget going to lunch on Sundays at a restaurant adjacent to Interstate 10. There was a homeless lady who would make her way to one of the tables and sit down. An employee would bring her food to eat … that had been left on other people’s plates! (I shudder as I think back on this. Why did the adults around her not buy her a fresh meal?). But she didn’t seem to care that her roll had a bite taken out of it or that her corn may have come from a child’s plate that had some unknown substance on it. She was desperately hungry, so she ate whatever was put in front of her.

Proverbs 27:7 (NLT): “A person who is full refuses honey, but even bitter food tastes sweet to the hungry.”

So, we understand this principle as it relates to food. But, there would seem to be other applications.

What about the appetite we are supposed to have for God’s Word.

Ever since my teenage years, I have made it a habit of rising before the sun comes up to spend time in God’s Word. I knew that when Jesus saved me, He took ownership of me. So I wanted to get His Word into my mind and heart so that I could be restfully available to Him when He desired to use me.

Desiring to be transparent, there have been times that I really enjoyed my time in God’s Word. It satisfied my inner, spiritual hunger. But there have been times when I got virtually nothing out of it. In fact, there have been plenty of times when I didn’t even feel like opening my Bible.

What was the difference? While there is an unlimited possibility of answers to this question, it was generally based upon my spiritual appetite. When I realized my desperate need for God’s Word and knew from experience that it had the ability to satisfy my inner longing, I enjoyed my time with it.

Yet, when I was attempting to satisfy my inner longings with any number of other things (relationships, pleasure, accumulating things, sins, etc.), I found my desire for God’s Word greatly diminished. It was sweet, delicious honey, but I wasn’t hungry, so I didn’t crave it.

Proverbs 27:7 (NLT): “A person who is full refuses honey, but even bitter food tastes sweet to the hungry.”

So, develop a hunger for God’s Word. Do you know how to do that? Simply spend time with it. Read it and spend time reflecting on it. Get with someone with whom you can regularly talk about God’s Word.

But, you also need to quit trying to satisfy an inner, spiritual longing with other things that just won’t ultimately satisfy you. If you find that your desire to spend time in God’s Word is weak, then discover what you are attempting to satisfy your spiritual hunger with and make the necessary adjustments.

Psalm 119:103 (NLT): “How sweet your words taste to me; they are sweeter than honey.”

Spend Time in Prayer

Lord Jesus, I often try to satisfy my spiritual hunger with things that simply won’t fill the void. Help me, Lord, to realize that You and Your Word are what ultimately fills me up. Help me to focus on studying Your Word and obeying it. I pray this in Your Name, Amen.

Matt Ellis is the pastor of First Baptist Church in Polk City, Florida (fbcpolkcity.com). His latest book is God’s Grace in the Real World. Connect with him on FacebookTwitter, or LinkedIn.

Photo by Amelia Bartlett on Unsplash