S175P1 – Filling the empty space: the word

1 Pet. 1:22-2:3

Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart, having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever, because “All flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of the grass. The grass withers, and its flower falls away, but the word of the LORD endures forever.” Now this is the word which by the gospel was preached to you. Therefore, laying aside all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and all evil speaking, as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby, if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is gracious.

Babies grow pretty quickly.  Over the course of two years, a child who was born 18 inches long could stand about three feet tall.  That is an increase of 200%.  The child needs certain things to grow by this rate, but he does not know that.  When he screams and cries with hunger, all he knows is that he is empty and wants to be filled.  Eventually, he comes to grow and understand what hunger is.  He learns what is food, and he learns which foods are better.  A diet of candies and desserts will not yield the same developmental results as a diet of meat and potatoes.  Those sweets will fill the child only for a moment but will not satisfy that hunger in the long run or promote growth.

The word of God fills us in a way that the worldly counterfeits try to fill us but cannot.  The world’s messages and the enemy’s messages will fill us with falsehoods that send us searching only to be let down.  When we feel spiritually empty, we need to refill with good spiritual food.  The counterfeit messages are like junk food that are nutritionally deficient and bring bad health.  They never truly fill or satisfy us but lead us to malnutrition and death.  The good spiritual food, which starts as milk then moves to solid meat, builds us as we take it in. [Heb. 5:12-14]  Like natural food, we must take it in regularly.  It is a routine we must follow if we want to remain spiritually healthy and satisfied. If you are feeling spiritually empty today, perhaps it is hunger from not having eaten well.

As adults, no one needs to tell us that we should eat every day because the body tells us through hunger.  In fact, we usually eat multiple times a day.  If the word of God is food for our souls and spirits, then our consumption of it must be no less routine.  Feasting on the ideological delicacies of the world or the flesh will not do.  Those teachings and ideologies only serve to drive us further from the Lord.  Our daily guidance for life must come from what He says.  It is our instruction, our motivation and our satisfaction.  The one who is empty need only feast on the word of God.  Father, give us wisdom and the desire to eat regularly of your word instead of the counterfeit, empty, false and deadly messages in this world.