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Rainbow Divider
MCM Broadcast

TV Broadcast #1327

The Blessing of Hunger
Conclusion

March 11, 2018

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— Brother Phil Enlow: If you are here today, and there is an emptiness in your heart, but there is something that is pulling you toward the Lord…it’s the Lord you’re missing. You don’t feel close to Him. You don’t feel loved…you don’t feel ‘something.’ There’s a sense that things aren’t going right or whatever, and it’s causing you to feel a sense of need in your heart. You are a blessed person!

( congregational amens ).

God is showing you how much He cares by causing you to feel a need! The people of this world are blind and they feel no need! They’re going along in their blindness and they’re headed straight to hell! But God loves you enough to make you hungry. What an awesome, amazing thing.

( congregational response ).

Praise God! I mean, there’s no room for a long sermon here. It’s just…it’s just a simple thought. “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness…” (NIV).

You know, ‘righteousness,’ it’s a fancy word. We have this vague idea that it’s doing right or whatever. But you know, Jesus was asked to summarize on one occasion…what’s the Law all about? How do you summarize what the Law’s about? He said, all the Law is summed up in two things. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, strength and mind, and your neighbor as yourself. That’s the entire Law right there.

But you talk about righteousness as being right…it’s being right in God’s eyes. It’s being in harmony with His nature and His purpose and all of that. And this is what God longs to put in us. And why He withdraws His presence or He brings a negative circumstance, or He does something that causes us to say, oh, wait a minute, something has interrupted me. I was going along, I felt great…I was enjoying His presence and now there’s a need here!

That’s when the Devil jumps in and he says, it’s your fault! You did something! He’s withdrawn until you straighten up. Instead of saying, oh God, You did this. But You did this so I would come to You and cry out to You because Your promise is goes on, and just doesn’t stop with, “Blessed are those that hunger and thirst for righteousness…” For what?

( congregational response ).

“…They will be filled.” The things that you and I feel such a deep need for sometimes are not things that God is withholding from us ‘til we straighten up! They are…I mean the desolation we feel is meant to bring us to Him so that we can say, oh Lord, I come, not because I’m righteous, I come because I’m in need.

( congregational amens ).

I’m glad to take the place of need, Lord. I don’t have what it takes! I need You!

( congregational amens ).

There’s no righteousness in me! Lord, if there’s anything in me that’s good, You put it there! And Lord, that new life…it’s crying out for more of You. It’s crying out to know You better, to have a deeper relationship with You, to not try to walk at a little bit of a distance, and…I think you know what I mean.

( congregational response ).

There’s always that little sense of fear, that little sense of something that the Devil tries to put in there. You’re not what you ought to be. How can a holy God love you? But God is gonna bring His children to a place where we enter…where we recognize that His love is not contingent upon our ability, or any goodness that’s in us. Praise God!

You know, I think it was Brian that referred recently to that scripture in 1st John about perfect love casting out fear. And of course, we know where love comes from, and how He proved it, how He demonstrated it. He demonstrated it by what He did on the Cross. It was when we were sinners that Christ died for us! We were His enemies! He didn’t wait for us to be friends. He did it for us while we were enemies.

And you know, the love that He longs to show is not dependent upon our performance…much as He longs for us to grow and to cooperate with Him. My God, we need to be able to bring all of our performance and say, oh God, help me. I want to be like You! I want to cooperate! I want You to do in me what’s needed. But Lord, it’s not in me and I come as I am. “Just as I am, without one plea.”

But you know, that verse about perfect love casting out fear because fear has torment, I think it’s in the King James. But, “…fear has to do with punishment.” The whole idea of fear there, is the fear that would come because God places a law upon me and makes His love for me contingent upon how I measure up to that law. That’s the underlying thought behind that verse.

Is His love dependent upon me measuring up to something? If it does, then I’ve got a reason to be very, very afraid! Because I can never be all He wants, in myself. But there is a love that God offers to people who will just simply come as they are and humble themselves before His face. And say, oh God, I come as I am, and I just embrace Your love. Oh, we want to deserve it…and we’re gonna get there and…one glimpse of that place and we’re gonna know, man, I did nothing to deserve this.

( congregational amens ).

I did nothing to deserve this. Oh God, how awesome, how amazing this is! How worthy You are of our love and our praise. God, do in us what’s needed. Lord, I just want to see spiritual hunger in a much deeper way than I ever have.

Again, I’m probably going around in circles in a way, but I just sense the Lord trying to get this through my thick skull. Folks, I’m just like you, I don’t know why I’m up here sometimes. Maybe that’s why. Because you need somebody up here that you can identify with. It’s not somebody who’s made it and says, what’s the manner with you and here’s how you’re supposed to do it.

That’s not the message. The message is that we…work together, we walk together! We all have exactly the same needs! We simply have different gifts and callings! But they’re all to help one another. I need your callings. I need your gifts. Because you become the channel of life to me…those streams that flow out of that river, flow through you to me, and to one another. But God is not gonna be satisfied just to leave us like we are. Thank God!

( congregational amens ).

What a horrible curse that would be! When you and I come face-to-face with our own lack and our own need, and maybe we’ve fallen in the mud in some respect, and we just feel that…oh God! Just think what it would be if God just left us. If He just said, okay that’s enough, I’ve had enough of you! Or, that’s good enough…good enough never is.

I’ll tell you, He is going to do completely a work in us and He’s gonna carry it out according to His promise until the day of redemption. Man, if He causes me feel my need of crying out to Him for more of that that He has laid up for me, that is an awesome, awesome blessing!

( congregational amens ).

And He deserves from me, whether I feel it or not, to stand up and shout and say, praise God! Lord, do what is needed in my life! Help me to respond to this sense of need by crying out and saying, God do whatever it takes in me! Because I see these needs and I can’t fix them, Lord! But You can, if I’ll just come to You, quit trying in myself but accept what I am, but take the hunger and the sense of need that I feel as a blessing and not a curse”a sign that something is right. Folks, if you’re sitting here today and you have any sense of desire toward the Lord, any sense that you need Him, you are among the most blessed people on this planet.

( congregational amens ).

God has singled you out. There is not one thing in you or in me that would even begin to reach out to God.

( congregational amens ).

No one seeks God, Paul said. Not one! None of us is good! None of us has the least little inclination in that direction, if we went by our nature! God has to invade! God has to come and confront us, and bring us to the sense of our need! I’ll tell you, if you’ve got that in you, something is very right. That’s not a sign that something’s wrong, that’s a sign of spiritual health! Isn’t it?

( congregational response ).

Would somebody be healthy physically if they never got hungry? Would that be a healthy person? No! But it’s the same way in the Spirit. God gives us that sense of something in here that just can’t be satisfied.

Now, I won’t tell the whole story. But my mind often goes back to something that happened when I was in college. And one of the things the Devil wants to tell me when something is wrong and there’s just this something that’s nagging something, that just constantly wants to be there…well, that’s just a sign you don’t even know the Lord. Now he’s probably never told any of you that.

( laughter ).

But the Lord allowed me to experience that thing in college, where I’ve told you before that I got mad at God and I stopped trying. It didn’t last a long time, thankfully. But I really did. I knew in the depth of my soul I couldn’t just say, God, I hate you. I’m gonna leave You. But I was just so discouraged and disgusted and angry that I just stopped and pouted for two or three days.

But something deep inside just sat there patiently, very quietly. There was this sense…I knew better, you can’t do this. It wasn’t some voice that had to come from the outside. It wasn’t…what’s the matter with you? Straighten up! It came from in here. That’s an amazing witness that only God can put in the heart.

( congregational amens ).

Folks, if there’s something in you that keeps coming to the surface and keeps pulling you towards the Lord…man, you better be just…you’ve got something to shout about.

( congregational amens ).

God did that. God did that! And He didn’t wait for you to get good enough or deserve it. He did it because He loves you, because that’s His nature. And I praise Him today. You know, there’s so much emphasis today on being hungry and thirsty. But I want you to know that is one awesome blessing! Don’t you ever be discouraged because you feel a need. If God has put a need in your heart that pulls you to any degree in His direction, that is God calling and drawing and saying, come to me.

Don’t try to get good enough. Don’t try to fix that need and then come. Come! Just come! I have everything that you need and I love you! What you’re feeling is not a negative thing”it’s not a bad thing! It’s my love drawing you to come to the place where I can…I want you drawn to the table. I want you to come to the table. Don’t you realize it’s mealtime? You’re in a place right now where it’s mealtime, and it’s right for you to be hungry, because I’ve got another meal for you. I’ve got something that’s gonna help you grow and get stronger. Come to me! Anybody here need this this morning?

( congregational response ).

Yeah. So I thank God for that sense of weakness and need. It’s a wonderful thing. I just taste in the smallest measure what Paul was expressing when he said, I glory in weakness. That wasn’t some spiritual thing he knew he was supposed to say. That was something where he came to a place of genuine sense that the only place where God could be in him what he needed was to be in that place of surrender and dependence upon an all powerful God.

And he said, “…my strength is made perfect in weakness.” (KJV). And Paul thought about that and said, isn’t that what I want? I don’t want my strength, I need His strength. The people to whom I minster, they need Your strength. They don’t need me. They don’t need my wisdom. They need You, Lord! Oh God, You’re doing what You’re doing so that I will come to you and just say, oh God, take my weakness and let Your strength be seen.

That changes the value system entirely, doesn’t it? Do we…are you really glad at how corrupt and weak you are? And needy? Does that make you jump for joy? In one sense, I understand that we don’t want to be that way. I’m not talking about that. But to occupy that place before God, is that a good thing or bad thing? That is the heart of what it means to come to God. We need Him, as has often as been said, more than we need our next breath.

( congregational amens ).

And to Him, be all the glory and all the praise. Blessed! “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.” (NIV). That’s God’s promise to you and to me. Now does that mean every circumstance is gonna work out the way I want it to? Does that mean my feeling will just suddenly go back to being euphoric? No, not necessarily.

Because part of growing up in Him, is learning how to walk by the Word and not by our feelings, and not by what we see. I refuse to let my sense of spiritual welfare be dictated by what happens to me, or by how I feel. And that’s a choice that you and I have to make every single day, because stuff happens. And our feelings do not stay the same. They are not a spiritual barometer that we can rely upon.

We need to…so God is gonna, literally He’s gonna create circumstances where we feel our need and we’re gonna have to step out and believe His Word and take a stand, and keep taking a stand, and keep taking a stand.

And I’ll tell you, what’s happening is God is feeding spiritual life into your inner man! That inner man is growing stronger in faith, because that faith is having to be exercised in the presence of resistance. Muscles don’t grow unless there’s resistance. If you want to get weak and flabby real fast, go live on a space station a while. You’ll come down here and you’ll collapse if you stay up there about a year or so and you don’t do something about it. There’s no resistance.

And just as God has given us resistance in order to build up spiritual muscles…what little I have left, He gives us exactly what we need to exercise ourselves. We feel the need. But sometimes, the need is to take a stand and exert spiritual muscle against something over time! And over time, I’ll tell you, our faith grows stronger, doesn’t it? And that’s a feature of our inner man. Love, joy, peace and all those things become stronger and stronger.

I’ll tell you, we’re very good at feeding the natural man…feeding the part of us that lives here. And sometimes God has to arrange things to get us to say, wait a minute, I need something…I’m going in the wrong direction. I need something to feed this inner man. You need Me. You need a relationship. You’ve devolved into a ritual. Come out of the ritual and come into a relationship with me and I’ll be with you and I’ll fill you. I’ll give you everything you need.

Oh, we have an awesome God. Do you feel the need this morning? Then you are blessed, and you need to rejoice and you need to take heart from God’s promise and come to Him, because you will be filled”you will be filled, and so will I. Praise God!