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by Mike Cope


The core battle in everyone’s life is to relate well to God, to worship him, enjoy him, experience his presence, hear his voice, trust him in everything, always call him good, obey every command (even the hard ones), and hope in him when he seems to disappear. —Larry Crabb

    The paradox of our time in history is that we spend more, but have less; we buy more, but enjoy it less.

    We have bigger houses and smaller families; more conveniences, but less time; more medicine, but less wellness.

    We read too little, watch TV too much, and pray too seldom.

    We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values.

    These are the times of tall men, and short character; steep profits, and shallow relationships.

    These are the days of two incomes, but more divorce; of fancier houses, but broken homes.

    We’ve learned how to make a living, but not a life; we’ve added years to life, not life to years; we’ve cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul.

    While we may have learned a lot more about digital information, have we improved our ability to love, forgive, and nurture? While we are gaining understanding about our world, have we grown in our knowledge of the Creator of the world?

It’s obvious that something is still missing.
    Despite all the junk food that is available to fill our hunger, it’s obvious that something is still missing. Evidence of that is seen in all the loneliness, emptiness, broken relationships, shattered dreams, substance abuse, and acts of violence that surround us.

    Yet in a deeper sense, these aren’t so much the problems as they are some symptoms of a larger problem. Maggie Ross has pinpointed the deeper issue:

We try to fill up that ghastly hole in the pit of our stomachs that is really in our souls. We try to fill it with food, with power, with sex... We begin to realize that this hunger will never be satisfied, not in this life. It is the hunger for the Face of God, and the only possible food is prayer. [Maggie Ross, The First of Your Life: A Solitude Shared (San Francisco: Harper, SanFrancisco, 1992), 120.]

    Here’s the stark truth: only God can fill our deepest hunger. Getting married can’t. Developing friendships can’t. Saying funny things at parties can’t. Unraveling your past with a therapist can’t. Adding 20% to your income can’t. Winning the lotto can’t.

    As Larry Crabb has discovered: “Brokenness is realizing He is all we have. Hope is realizing He is all we need. Joy is realizing He is all we want.”[Larry Crabb, The Safest Place on Earth (Nashville: Word, 1999), 39.]

    In Scripture there is a word to describe any attempt to find true life in anyone or anything other than God: idolatry. In that sense an idol could be a stone figure or a spouse, a graven image or a growing retirement fund.

    But we can resist the idols. We can find our hunger satiated in God. To help us do just that, we’ll examine our hunger and look at others who found their hunger filled by God.

This is Part 1 of a series. Click here for Part 2...
      © 2001, Mike Cope. Excerpted from One Holy Hunger, HillCrest Publishing, 2001. Used by permission.
      Title: ""
      Author: Mike Cope
      Publication Date: March 23, 2001


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One Holy Hunger: When God Is All You Want One Holy Hunger: When God Is All You Want
Mike Cope
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