The day had been extremely hard and confusing for Joe. He had been told to pack up his things and leave, since he had been replaced at work.
Joe didn’t know how long he had been sitting in his car, fuming with anger. Remembering all the times he had Come in early and stayed late, not to mention all the holidays and weekends he had sacrificed for his job, Joe was filled with a violent rage. It festered within him, growing worse every minute. Like a madman, Joe repeatedly slammed his fist into his car seat.
Then he began shouting out loud. “I was one of your top producers, but look at me now! You’ve treated me like dirt! I hope you’re all satisfied with the new guy! In any case, I hope you all go broke!”
After keeping this up for some time, Joe fell back against the seat, totally drained. By now, he contained all the energy of a limp dishrag.
Still paralyzed by the shock, and feelling nothing but an incessant pounding in his head, Joe didn’t know what lay before him. But a kind of numbness settled over him as he robotically turned the key in the ignition.
Having driven these roads for years, he smirked to himself, more than confident that he could have driven home in his sleep. So pulling out of the parking lot as though he had been programmed, he headed down the familiar street.
It was a gloomy afternoon, and the windshield wipers cut through the mist. They seemed to chant sardonically, “You know what you did wrong. You know what you did wrong.” Joe tried to ignore this, and just turned onto the freeway on-ramp.
However, the traffic also seemed to mock him. Like a man having muscle spasms, it randomly alternated between a rapid pace and a slow crawl.
Trying to unleash some pent-up energy as he sat there, Joe tapped the steering wheel nervously in a state of frustration, unable to focus. Feeling like a hostage, he began grumbling to himself.
Then, deciding he needed some good old-fashioned junk food, Joe got off at the next exit.
This exit is one that all of us have taken at one time or another. While I am ashamed to admit it, I can remember times when I felt like a prisoner of my own circumstances. Instead of letting God’s Word comfort me during those times, I turned to the fridge for comfort food. I remember one time when I escaped my problems by eating a large pizza by myself, in one sitting. Or, there was the time when I drowned my frustrations in a half-gallon of ice cream. But the ice cream and pizza were soon gone, and my problems were still there.
Perhaps you feel that way now, or you’re in a similar state of mind. But in any case, please stop and let Joe’s situation speak to you, because his story is really all of ours.
We all feel lost at one time or another, and we often walk through life like a blind person, bumping into walls. Let me tell you from experience, my friend: that definitely hurts in a physical room, but the walls of life are even harder and more painful. I can tell you this because I have done my share of bumping as well. The ice cream of life melts all too quickly, but our problems are still around, staring us in the face.
It doesn’t have to be that way, though. We can get the spiritual cateracts removed from the eyes of our hearts. Instead of turning to mere, perishable comfort food, God wants to usher us all into His operating room. Like physical cateract surgery, God’s work will allow us to see more clearly once it is finished.
However, most of us refuse to hear His voice of invitation, preferring to stumble in the darkness. But, my friend, why hold onto that large pizza, when God offers us all an eternal feast? Rather than searching through a fridge that doesn’t hold any real answers, God clearly tells all of us, “Follow me. Seek my kingdom first, and really get to know me better.”
Instead of leaving us alone to figure that out, God tells us how to do this. So let’s make camp right here, and explore that thought by looking at Psalm 107:9.
“For he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.”
The two key words here are “satisfies” and “fills”. Let’s look at them one at a time. While we check to see what God means here, it is imperative that we also look at these key words in context.
First, God tells us that it is the thirsty whom He satisfies. You know as well as I do that temprol thirst is only alleviated, and not really satisfied.
Pretend it’s a hot day, and you’re working out in the yard. You go inside for a cold Coke, and after drinking it, you go back outdoors. You may have alleviated your thirst temporarily, but after some time, I can guarantee you’ll want another Coke.
It is the same way when we try to satisfy our fleshly appetites with the world’s refreshment. Our earthly achievements will disappear sooner or later, but what we do in the name of Christ will last for eternity. So if you haven’t come to Christ, let your thirst drive you to Him today. Even if you have known Him for years, let His Word speak to you.
I see biblical hunger as being a little bit different than thirst, and that brings us to the next stage of growth. To see what I mean, please look at Jeremiah 15:16 below.
“When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear your name, Lord God Almighty.”
While thirst initially brings me to God, a deep hunger to know Him better allows me to feast at His table. Here I can dine with Jesus on a moment-by-moment basis, experiencing and building an intimate relationship with Him.
So instead of searching for comfort food that only offers a little relief and a lot of pounds, begin your journey to God today, as you search his Word for answers.
Thank you for reading this, and may the Lord give you a wonderful week! We are trying to reach people who are hurting, so if God lays it on your heart, please consider becoming a partner with us. If you would like to make a donation, please visit www.hcmachaplains.org and click on the Donate Now link. You can also send donations by mail to HCMA (Healthcare Chaplains Ministry Association). Our ID number is 560. The address is 101 S Kraemer BLVD, Suite 123A, Placentia, CA 92870.
Finally, you’re always welcome to join our Tuesday night Bible study. These studies are conducted by conference call, and they take place at 5:30 PM Arizona time. Our conference number is 313-209-8800. Our PIN is 8699032. We hope to talk with you soon!
If you have questions, comments or prayer requests for Timothy or Stephanie Burdick, please call 507-369-6861.