So, this Scripture was in my small group video last night and it struck me to the core:
"For, as I have often told you before and now say again even with tears, many live as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame." (Philippians 3:18-19)
Their god is their stomach. The fleshly appetite. Letting things of this world become our god. Desiring things of this world more than God. Ouch.
The passage struck me because even on the drive to my friend's house (where we have small group) I heard the DJ on K-Love talking about what we put in our minds greatly influencing our thoughts, attitudes, emotions. It's not a new idea, by any means, but it just struck me. The DJ said he used to listen to talk radio and noticed he was walking around depressed all the time, and he was easily angered. He stopped listening to talk radio and started listening only to Christian music and he noticed a change in his attitude.
I thought back to the time right after I had my now-big girl. I was out in the country, alone all day while my man was at work, nursing my baby around the clock, and watching old Frasier episodes. And I was slipping into a dark place.
Why? Because I was desperately longing for relationships. Interaction. Anything but constant aloneness. (A new word for you, thankyouverymuch.) And I sought some fulfillment in the comedy of Frasier and Niles.
God set up the perfect environment for me to have endless days in His Word and in prayer. And instead of recognizing the quiet and solitude as a gracious gift, an opportunity to hear His voice loud and clear, I grew weary of the quiet and I filled it with earthly, temporary things. I had a whole year to feast on God, the One that could satisfy my need for companionship and give me nourishment that would last a whole lifetime. And I chose Frasier, because I could see him and my flesh wanted immediate satisfaction. I could have been investing in JOY, and I chose to squander my riches (of time) on laughter.
Then...this morning I opened my Bible app to find this verse:
"Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled." (Matthew 5:6)
And I was reminded that even now I am hungry. I may not be starving for companionship like I was that first year of being a momma. But I have other hunger pains. And with what or whom am I filling them?
I shared this verse from Matthew with my girls this morning on our drive to preschool. I told them that we are made to want Jesus...that we are to want Him more than we want food, or milk, or water...or coffee, I threw in as a reminder to myself. I told them that if we want Him more than anything else, we will be satisfied.
Do they understand? Maybe. Maybe not. But I am still going to tell them. And one day--I hope a day or two thousand earlier than me--they will get it.
When our stomach growls, our mind wants, or our heart longs, may we be reminded of God and the deep-rooted desire He has planted in us for Him. May we seek Him until we are fully satisfied, even if our stomach is still empty.
My "Attitude of Gratitude" comes from Ann Voskamp's joy dare for today: a gift wrinkled, smoothed, unfolded...
wrinkled--my babies' hands and feet after a good long soak in the bath (#188)
smoothed--clean sheets on the bed (189)
unfolded--a Hershey's kiss (190)
Your turn! Go!
For more on "Attitude of Gratitude" see this post.