Summary: Sin, Salvation, our response to the gospel
TOO HUNGRY FOR WORDS
Matt 7: 21-23 (p 686) September 11, 2011
One of the consequences of having three stents put in your heart and being diabetic is your diet is going to change. In fact it’s not a diet. It really does become a life style where you’re trying to figure out how many carbs. Am I having the right portions of proteins, veggies, and fruit? But even though I think I’m doing a pretty good job I’ve noticed something about myself--I’m hungry all the time.
The portions never seem to quite satisfy my desire. After I’ve eaten breakfast (cheerios and a banana) I start thinking about lunch. And after lunch I start thinking about dinner. I’m hungry all the time.
But as you can tell I’m not starving to death. I’m hungry. I’m not dying because I’m not getting enough to eat. I’m not one of the 26m children who will die today in the world because of starvation.
[I remember on one trip to Haiti when I was younger fixing beans with an egg on top of it for hundreds of children who came down from the mountains. Many of them ate the beans but wrapped the egg up in a leaf. I looked at Paul & Rachael Ronle, the missionaries, and they said, ‘It’s all they’ll have today. Some take the egg back for little brothers or sisters or to eat later.”]
I think spiritually we in American are much like eating what I want when I want it, and as much of it as I want. We’ve got a smorgasbord of spiritual platters. We can choose the type of worship we want, we hunger for things that meet our wants and when we don’t get exactly what we want when we want it we complain about how hungry we are.
But the world outside America is different. They aren’t just hungry for spiritual food. They are starving to death outside of Christ. They don’t just hunger. They are starving for the word of God. They are too hungry for words.
David Platt in his book “Radical” describes an Asian Underground church…
“Just imagine going to worship gathering in one of those house churches. Not an all-day training in the Word. Just a normal three-hour worship service late in the evening. The Asian believer who is taking you gives you the instructions. “Put on dark pants and a jacket with a hood on it. We will put you in the back of our car and drive you into the village. Please keep your hood on and your face down.”
When you arrive in the village under the cover of night, another Asian believer meets you at the door of the car. “Follow me,” he says.
With your hood over your head, you crawl out of the car, keeping your face toward the ground. You begin to walk with your eyes fixed on the feet of the man in front of you as he leads you down a long and winding path with a small flashlight. You hear more and more footsteps around you as you progress down the trail. Then finally you round the corner and walk into a small room.
Despite its size, sixty believers have crammed into it. They are all ages, from precious little girls to seventy-year-old men. They are sitting either on the floor or on small stools, lined shoulder to shoulder, huddled together with their Bibles in their laps. The roof is low, and one light bulb dangles from the middle of the ceiling as the sole source of illumination. No sound system. No band. No guitar. No entertainment. No cushioned chairs. No heated or air-conditioned building. Nothing but the people of God and the Word of God. And strangely, that’s enough.
God’s Word is enough for millions of believers who gather in house churches just like this one. His Word is enough for millions of other believers who huddle in African jungles, South American rain forests, and Middle Eastern cities. But is his Word enough for us?
That’s an important question…maybe the important question.
I IS GOD’S WORD WHAT BRINGS US TOGETHER?
What would happen if we stripped away the cool music (both traditional and contemporary), the cushioned chairs? What if the HD TVs are gone and all the fancy sound stuff? What if the A/C is turned off and all the comforts removed? Would God’s Word still be enough for His people to come together? Are we still a people who are hungry for the revelation of God? I know we love to see our friends. I know we bring our kids to café and to Jr. Worship. But the question still remains: If you took everything else away, is God’s Word the reason His people at Fern Creek Christian come together? Is it what we hunger for like a starving man hungers for a meal?