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In South Africa we have a popular fried chicken fast food restaurant called Chicken Licken. This is similar to Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) in the United States of America.  Chicken Licken had an advert that said, “A hungry soul is a restless soul.” Though it was meant for marketing and humor, there is so much truth in it. We are all hungry for something in life – in one way or another, thus, we are restless. Saint Augustine expressed this idea in the following words, “Oh God, thou hast made us for thyself, and our hearts are restless till they rest in Thee.”- Augustine.

People hunger for different things in life; some hunger for fame, some for power, some for success, some hunger for sexual pleasure, some for positions and some hunger for God. The fact is that you can never go against your hunger in life; you will always go where your hunger leads you. Your hunger is the driving force to your destiny or destruction.

Humans have an innate hunger, we are born with a deep need to be satisfied. It appears that our achievements in life prove to be inadequate in satisfying this innate longing. Clearly, we need something or someone divine to quench our thirst and fill our hunger.

The Holy Bible suggests that human life is empty, dry, and lifeless without the Spirit of God. But, there is hope, God promised to pour His Spirit upon all flesh in Joel 2:28. Thus, the entire story of the Bible is an invitation to a fulfilling life in Christ.

HUNGER FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS 

Human beings are in a constant search for meaning, purpose and glory in what they do, and who they become in doing it. There is no doubt that we have an innate hunger for the things we pursue and what we become in doing them. However, the real question is what informs your hunger and who or what will satisfy it?

In Matthew 5:6, Jesus defines and channels human hunger. He gives human hunger a direction and a destiny in the following words, “Blessed are those who hunger for righteousness for they shall be filled/ satisfied.” To hunger for righteousness is to say, I want to please God, and give Him the glory not for what I want from Him but for what He has already done for me. 

Righteousness is the nature that God Himself has granted to us in Christ Jesus, Romans 3:26. God has put His righteousness in us and thus, He demands that we display it in all things. But the truth is, you can only display what you are hungry for in life. Hence you must hunger for righteousness not because you do not have it but because having it means you need to display it in all things to the glory of God. 

Essentially, when God gives you something, what He wants to see is His righteousness and that in turn should be your desire and hunger – to be righteous to God in all things. Whatever you do in life: In your relationships, marriage, career, business, ministry or hustle you should be driven by the desire to display God’s righteousness. 

Our hunger must be for the things that God expects from us – God expects righteousness. When our hunger is aligned with and directed at God’s holy demands, His glory gets displayed in and through us. God’s holy demand in marriage is faithfulness, thus our hunger is not marriage itself but to be faithful in it. God’s demand in leadership is servanthood, thus our hunger should not be the position of leadership but the need to display God’s righteousness through serving others. God’s demand to those who have much is giving, thus we must be eager to give because to whom much is given, much is required. Hence, we should not ask for the things we are not willing and prepared to use to meet God’s demands of righteousness in them. 

Jesus further stresses His point later in Matthew 6:33 in the following words “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things shall be yours as well.” In other words, you must make righteousness your priority and goal resulting in other things being added. Hunger for and to live in the reality of God’s Kingdom. 

So, both what you want to be and what you want to see in life has been defined for you: Be righteous and desire to see the Kingdom of God. This godly desire is also what we should pray for, “Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” Matthew 6:10. 

This godly hunger for righteousness is what keeps us alive, refreshed, and centered in God, Acts 17:28. In the benediction, Matthew captures this idea so well “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 5:3. When we acknowledge our need for God, we invite God’s supply to that need but if we ignore it, we become hopeless.

IGNORING GODLY HUNGER.

Sin is ignoring godly hunger and choosing to direct it elsewhere. When we ignore godly hunger, we remain dead in sin. Anything you try to use outside of God to satisfy yourself is a move away from God. When you take your godly hunger from God, the devil gets the opportunity to direct your hunger elsewhere. The devil will present material things to redirect your hunger to fleshy things. Hence, we live life trying to satisfy a hunger that was made for God with the best of this world. A misplaced hunger will reduce you into a worshipper of material things. “What we hunger for most, we worship.” John Piper, A Hunger For God.

Your godly hunger belongs to God, not to people, not to things, not even to yourself. “If I find in myself desires which nothing in this world can satisfy, the only logical explanation is that I was made for another world.” – C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity.

A misplaced hunger is one of the biggest tragedies of our generation: Redirecting peoples hunger to God is the biggest mission of our generation.

PROVISION: THE HOLY SPIRIT.

There is only one satisfier of human longing and human’s deepest desires – that is the Lord, Jesus Christ. In Christ, we find a provision and a supply for our hunger, “And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life:he that cometh to me shall never hungerand he that believeth on me shall never thirst. John 6:35. 

Do not avoid the emptiness that is in your heart or try to feed it with success, material belongings, or parties. There are not enough accolades in this world that can adequately give you lasting joy, peace, happiness, and fulfillment. Give your life to God and thirst no more. Jesus can fill up that endless hole in your heart by the Holy Spirit. Your heart can overflow with joy, peace, and everlasting life. Your life should not be driven by your need to succeed, because that’s a journey without an end. On the contrary, your life should be inspired and driven by the overflowing supply of God’s Spirit which brings true and everlasting satisfaction. “For He satisfies the longing soul, and fills the hungry soul with goodness.” Psalm 107:9. 

God is willing to pour Himself into those who admit that they are in need of the outpouring of the life-giving Spirit. God always responds to our hunger for Him, “I will pour my Spirit upon your offspring, and my blessing on your descendants.” Isaiah 44:3.

If we have a hunger for God, we have no reason not to believe that God will fill us with Himself. God will never overlook a hunger that is directed at Him. God is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him, Hebrews 11:6. Our hunger for God comes with an assurance that we will be filled. 

Thabang T. Letsie

Pastor at Resolved Church in Pretoria, South Africa. Life is more meaningful when lived with eternal perspective: the gift of God is ETERNAL LIFE and not just life. I love reading, writing, and preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ.

30 Comments

  • Eric Magwanyana says:

    Thank you Pastor, this is a refreshing article. It is encouraging to know that my hunger will be satisfied as long it’s directed to God. So today I can choose hope or the endless pursuit of other things. I like how you put it “Your life should not be driven by your need to succeed, because that’s a journey without an end.”

    Thank you again Moruti.

  • Jerry says:

    Inspiring message that came in at the right time in my life.. Changed my perspective on success, marriage and desires.. My desire now is to fully redirect all my hunger back to God, daily, because then will I be filled.

    Shalom

  • Ps Sifiso Jeremiah says:

    Shalom Pastor T and Resolved family

    Powerful exposition, simple and easy to absorb.

    “your hunger is the driving force to your destiny or destruction.” this statement reminds me that it’s crucial to us to watch what we consume on a daily basis, because our appetites dictates the direction our lives. Hence its important to feed on Christ (Bread of life).

    Great grace Mfundisi

    • Pastor Sifiso, thank you so much for your continued support and love. The line you have quoted is the backbone of this article, we all have hunger, but what we do with it determines where we will end. Thank you sir for taking your precious time to read and reflect on it.

  • Obuhle says:

    Thank you so much Pastor for the article, every word was moving .What stil has moved me the most is Hunger for Righteousness and that “the truth is that you only display what you are hungry for in life.”
    I am really grateful that you spent your time making this article to give us a better understanding on the Topic: Hunger For God

  • NM says:

    “Your hunger is the driving force to your destiny or destruction”

    Yah….thank you!

  • Motshabi says:

    In the book of Ecclesiates 1, Solomon describes most of the worldly things we could ever hunger for. The mind-blowing is that after pursuing all his desires and obtaining them, his conclusion is this: VANITY, like grasping for the wind.

    Thank you Lord that hungering for You is not in vain. There is a promise and guarantee of satisfaction. What more could we want? Help us to heed the call to direct our hunger to You.

    • Well said, I am so glad your quoted Ecclesiastes 1 as it speak to this subject. Indeed, the provision has been made for our hunger… the call has been made “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink…” John 7:37.

  • Rebecca Motsepe says:

    Thank you for such a beautiful and insightfull article Pastor Letsie.
    “Your hunger is the driving force to your destiny or destruction.” Indeed and a lot of us are hungry for the “things” of the world and forget that in God, we have everything we need.

    • Thank you so much for taking the time to read and leave a comment. You have quoted the statement that serve as a backbone to this article. If we respond well to our hunger then we have a destiny and not a distraction.

  • Melusi Nkosi says:

    Thank you for prompting the hunger for God in our lives man of God.

    Indeed there is only one satisfier of men’s hunger, the Lord, Jesus Christ (The Bread of Life).

  • Lindokuhle Matsebula says:

    Thank you for a very insightful article Moruti, that addresses the elephant in the room for many believers: is it okay for us to pursue anything else apart from ministry? There is an undeniable hunger in all of us, and I think the awareness of this allows us to be intentional about it. We can allow this hunger to be satiated temporarily, or we can seek lasting satisfaction. I think that for me the article reminds me that like food for the stomach, a hunger of God is not once-off satiation. We do not come to God once and think that one encounter is enough. We will always be hungry, always restless, unless we are constantly eating of the Word and resting in Him.

  • Nomvuselelo says:

    This article touches on many aspects of our lives but for me, it highlights what we live for (purpose). God created us for His glory. What we pursue in this life should be aligned to our identity in Christ and God’s intent.

  • Yvonne Ngema says:

    “If we have a hunger for God, we have no reason not to believe that God will fill us with Himself”-Thank you for this life changing theme for the year and article Pastor. I am in awe that God desires to fill each and every empty place in my life. My expectation is renewed as I look to God to cause rivers of living waters to flow over my soul.

  • Nontombi Sibeko says:

    Thank you Pastor. This is such an eye opener. We have been persuing things other than God because we think they will fill the void in us. But the truth is, none of those things can actually fill us, why? Because it is only God who is able to do that. Our hunger must be redirected to God and to Him alone. “If we have a hunger for God, we have no reason not to believe that God will fill us with Himself.”

  • Relebohile says:

    Thank you Pastor for sharing insights about such an awakening topic on “Hunger for God”, it is indeed true that complete satisfaction is found in God because He is the one you has created us and He knows exactly the heart of man and how it functions. Thanks for expanding on the point that God does not demand things from us that we are unable to display, He says blessed are those who hunger for righteousness because He knows that He has instilled in us righteousness but we should hunger for it.

  • Fumani says:

    Good day, Pastor.

    This is a powerful article about the Hunger for God. Hunger is what drives us indeed, it can drive you to good or bad (destiny or destruction). However, If we seek first His kingdom and righteousness, then all things will fall into place.
    What has touched me the most from the article is that; Hunger for Righteousness and that “the truth is that you only display what you are hungry for in life.” Our actions in life determines our destiny. Thank you for sharing this topic as it awakens one’s perspective in life.

  • Asemahle says:

    Thank you so much Pastor for a such a remarkable, eye opening article, i think more than anything it is so retable, I think majority can testify as to how the hunger for worldly things leaves us with a void and it imprison us to sin but the hunger for God comes with freedom, satisfaction and provision through the promise of the holy Spirit because he knows exactly what we need and what’s so interesting is that God is only asking us to seek him first and everything else will be given, some of the things we are so hungry for are within his plans for us but we are so blinded by the worldly pressures that we think we don’t need him , yet he is all we need in order to get fulfilment.

  • Wow, indeed, God is all we need and when this dawns NEW MEANING emerges and we begin to live our lives in this new light. I have to quote you because what you just said here is key “…the hunger for worldly things leaves us with a void and it imprison us to sin but the hunger for God comes with freedom, satisfaction and provision through the promise of the Holy Spirit.” Well said, well put, well done!!!!

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