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Wednesday, April 20, 2016

You Want Me to Eat What??? Part 1

The crowd looked at Him with widening eyes and gaping jaws. Some covered their mouths, trying to hide their disgust. Others stared with open hostility. In the midst of the antipathy, those truly hungry leaned in closer to Jesus, straining to hear the whispers of His heart. These were His friends. Their hearts clamored, “Where else would we go? You have the words of life!”

Jesus had just shocked the throng with these words, “I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you.” (John 6:53, NIV). Some of those gathered had come hoping for another free meal. However, they were completely void of any kind of appetite for what really satisfies. Jesus spoke these words to provoke them. To wake them up to hunger that cries out for true substance.

Then there were those present that were pressing in to Jesus out of a craving that drove them deeper. His words were also for them. He was inviting them to His Real Feast.

Jesus is an extravagant banquet for the hungry ones with ears to hear.

Such perplexing, offensive words though! They had exactly the effect for which Jesus purposed them. The listeners who didn’t really want to listen began to lift up voices of sharp protest. With one sentence, He had laid bare the state of their hearts. They took offense rather than searching intently for what He meant. Their arguments amongst themselves reflected their extreme discomfort with His light shining on the dark recesses of their inner rooms. This was sacred space He was treading on! These were the untouchable halls where their mechanisms of complacency and self rule were stored.

But the hungry ones. They listened with their deep hearts. They allowed Holy Spirit to open up for them the truth of what Jesus was expressing. They understood that the Kingdom of God is like a treasure hidden far underground. One must dig down well under the surface to unearth its opulence. These are the ones who live life with a shovel in hand and their hair tied up in a bandana -- ready to excavate His riches.

What about you? What if Jesus wants to mess with your paradigm?  What happens when you open the Bible and the verse in front of you makes no sense at all? What if He is inviting you to pull out your trowel and start moving layers of dirt out of the way of a life-changing discovery just waiting to overtake you with goodness? Will you lean in with intense concentration? Will you ask, seek, knock? Will you invest the time to go deeper? Will you tarry with Him?

Consider this promise: “If you call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding, and if you look for it as for silver and search for it as for hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God.” (Prov 2:3-5, NIV)

Call out. Cry aloud. Search for it. In other words, you have to really want it. And then you gotta go after it with ALL your might.

If you are hungry enough to make His treasures yours, get expectant! You just might be amazed at what you are going to find next as you quarry in Holy Spirit’s mine.

A prayer for voracious spiritual miners:

“Lord Jesus! I don't get everything You are doing and saying, but with all of me, I want all that You have! Here is my heart. Please shine with all Your brilliance on my inner rooms. I give You permission to mess with patterns of thinking that need more of Your truth. I’m asking, seeking, knocking – show me Your hidden treasures today. Please keep provoking me to dig deeper in You!”

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