From Famine to Feast: Preparation
The picture is all too familiar... Times are good. Nourishment abounds. Ease is taken. And then, almost going unnoticed, there comes a day of dryness. Then a week. Whole months roll by without strength being replenished regardless of man’s knowledge or effort. God told the Prophet Amos there was coming a time of famine in the land. But this famine was different. While food and drink graced the tables of the rich and poor, an unseen locust crept in and stole the hearing of God’s Word from the souls of his people (Amos 8:11).
What happens when a famine of hearing of the word of the Lord creeps into your life or mine? Strength fails. Hope falters. Courage fades.
What happens when it comes upon an entire nation?
God raised up a leader to combat the physical famine of the closing chapters of Genesis. Centuries later after forty-two months of famine, God’s man, Elijah, prayed and the rain fell.
With spiritual famine all around us, we are tempted to discouragement and retreat. But we don’t have to fail.
Jesus spent forty days fasting in the wilderness, nothing to bring him nourishment. Could this have been the first time in His life when he had gone six weeks without hearing the Word of the Lord. Without hearing it expounded in the synagogue. Without times of fellowship in the word around the table of family or friends. Yet, when the Tempter came, Jesus was ready. Spiritual manna flowed freely as he quoted three separate texts from Deuteronomy to push back Satan’s attack.
Joseph of Egypt stored up physical food. Jesus of Nazareth stored up spiritual food. When He faced temptation in a drained, dry moment, there was an abundant supply to meet His needs and glorify the Father. Years of study and meditation enabled Him to find victory in the midst of hardship and temptation.
How is your supply holding up? What are you laying up in store for the future? Are we daily making true the words of the Psalmist:
I have stored up your word in my heart that I might not sin against you (Psalms 119:11, ESV).
By Steve Cartin
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