April 23, 2009
Breaking the Famine, Part Two
by Charles R. Swindoll
Yesterday we read the words of the prophet Amos who predicted a famine---not one of hunger for literal food or for fresh water. Amos foresaw a famine for hearing God's truth proclaimed. Read the prophet's words again:
"Behold, days are coming," declares the Lord GOD,
"When I will send a famine on the land,
Not a famine for bread or a thirst for water,
But rather for hearing the words of the LORD.
People will stagger from sea to sea
And from the north even to the east;
They will go to and fro to seek the word of the LORD,
But they will not find it." (Amos 8:11-12)
There's a famine in the land. Unless you are an exception and you find yourself under the sound of reliable, meaningful, deep, and courageous proclamations of God's written Word week after week, you must admit that you're in the midst of that famine. Whether you realize it or not, the toll it is taking on you and those you love is nothing short of devastating.
Let's recommit ourselves to breaking that famine. Here's how to start:
First, pray that God will bring about a revival in the hearts of His people---a revival of interest in the personal reading and studying of His Word. Pray for seminaries where God's ministers are being trained to handle and declare the Truth. Pray for your pastor---for sufficient time to be spent in the study, preparing . . . and then for courage to "preach the Word" with authority. Rarely do congregations get more serious about spiritual things than their pastor, so pray for a renewal of zeal.
Second, begin to nourish yourself in the Scriptures. Get serious about "fixing your own spiritual meals" rather than relying on someone else to prepare all those meals for you. Start cooking from your own biblical recipes! Be selective and discerning. Don't allow yourself to be satisfied with spiritual junk food served by shallow, careless communicators!
Third, consider starting a Bible class in your own home. Great things can happen in settings like that. There's a lot of spiritual nutrition to be gained in groups committed to learning and growing together.
There's a famine in the land. It's time to put an end to it.
Reprinted by permission. Day by Day, Charles Swindoll, July 2005, Thomas Nelson, inc., Nashville, Tennessee. All rights reserved. Purchase "Day by Day" here.