I was with a group that was spending a day of shopping in Bangalore. We had ministered every day for nearly two weeks, so now we were taking a respite in this great city.
Beggars fill the city of Bangalore. They are as frequent and as thick as the dirt in the air. Every turn you make, you will find yourself in the face of one. Usually they have a baby in tow. A baby is good for business. The boss gets richer with an infant or toddler aged child in the picture. The beggar and the baby do not often belong together but are joined just for business purposes. Babies are just props that are good for production. They can be purchased for little of nothing and they bring in the money. Who can resist the hungry eyes of a baby?
She stirs now. He moves her to the sidewalk and nestles in front of a business. They have been chased from this storefront many times before. There is nowhere else to go. He must protect her. The sun is hot. Here they will find shade. She is all of eighteen month or so. No one has counted her days since birth. No one cares.
We see them and head straight to them. Immediately they both cup their hands and touch their lips with their fingers. This means they are hungry. They beg for mercy. Many will give money to them. We give small coins. We have a box of cookies that we have purchased from a nearby bakery. We open the plastic container and hand it to the little girl. She eats, and eats, and eats until every cookie is gone. She does not share, he does not mind. Then she licks the container. . She will not rest until every last morsel fills her.
The beggar, a little boy, all of seven or eight, lets her eat her fill. He is so grateful that her stomach will have rest from the wrenching pain of hunger. We give them water. They drink their fill. We find something for him to eat as well.
We cannot be here tomorrow, so we pray that the Lord will send help to these desperate children. We leave them behind, our hearts breaking, wanting to bring them home with us.
Hunger is painful. Thirst is as well.
They will drive you to get what you need.
You will enjoy what you get!
"Blessed and fortunate and happy and spiritually prosperous [that is, in that state in which the born-again child of God enjoys His favor and salvation] are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness (uprightness and right standing with God) for they shall be completely satisfied!"
I have also seen spiritual hunger.
I have friends that I met in Sri Lanka that are so hungry to see the Lord move in their nation that they rise in the wee hours of morning (one or two o'clock) to pray and worship together. They pray for revival to come to their land and they are seeing miracles.
Another friend that lives much closer to home, sets her alarm for 3 a.m. so that she can spend one full hour with the Lord, worshiping, listening, waiting, upon Him. She sits ready with pen and paper handy so that when He speaks she is prepared. She explained that there are so many daily distractions that steal from her quiet, listening moments with the Lord. She has yet to get a call in the middle of the night during this set aside time with her God. He is faithful to meet her there!
The little beggar and his cherub were starving and in pain with physical hunger. My friends are hungry for God and are as desperate as those children to be filled so they look for ways to feast in His presence. And He provides. The Lord sets a marvelous table presenting a feast prepared for kings! Delicacies created just for you to enjoy!
The time that they spend with Him does not make them more righteous, they just enjoy His righteousness more. They are "completely satisfied!" just like the little girl who licked the cookie box clean. They enjoy every minute of it.
Knowing these kind of people stirs a hunger in me. I see more of Jesus in them and it makes me want more of Him in me. It causes pain. A restlessness. A longing to be filled.
There is a promise in verse 6, if you hunger, you will be filled.......not you could be, or you might be.........no! You will be filled!
I saw three baby birds one day in a nest on our front porch. One little bird never shut his mouth, he sat perched with it wide open hoping that his momma was going to come and put something juicy in it. The other two babies were whimpering and chirping but not ready when the momma came with her catch. The one that had their mouth open got the feast! The two little whimpering birds learned from the one who was ready and the next time the momma flew to her nest, all three of them were ready with open mouths. All three were filled!
So today I wait, hoping for a mouthful! I am hungry! How about you?
Waiting to be filled!
ps. Ephesians 5:18~
"Do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit."
In the original Greek this verse says: "be being filled". We must continue to be filled with His Spirit.