Written By: Ashley Elliott
Isn’t it a beautiful thing when something hits you juuuuuust right?
When the person you were just thinking of calls you.
When your kiddo looks over and says something sweet just when you were feeling down.
When your spouse has taken a chore off of your to-do list just when you were about to burst
or in my case today, when a passage in Bible study hits you just where you need it.
The Bible study I wanted to participate in this fall meets about 45 minutes from my house. I have been yearning for a connection with the ladies at my base ever since our move to this location, but I have fallen short on making it a priority. *insert 3 kids, mid-day preschool pick up, extra curricular activities, and a baby who doesn’t like the car.* Do you know that feeling of missing a community left behind? We are often our own worst enemy when it comes to building new bridges when we are longing for old ones.
Alas, I made a commitment to a new study and the day before week 1 the dashboard of our van lit up with the lights we all hate to see – the check engine light and battery light. HELLO! I’m trying to hit some goals here! Why now car? Is there ever a good time for car issues, though? There was a brief moment of thinking “gah, how can I follow through with this commitment if I can’t even make it to week 1?!” Ever had a voice that creeps in to fog your brain and throw the idea around that what you want to do just isn’t going to work? Pressing forward toward your goals takes deliberate effort – each day responsibilities will be flying at you, obstacles will be popping up, and somebody else will need something from you.
Week 2, I made it to where I wanted, when I wanted … and the message we discussed was just what I needed, just when I needed it. That is a beautiful thing.
Just like God gave us the ability to experience physical hunger, He gave us the ability to experience spiritual hunger. Being “hangry” isn’t always pretty, but the good component about hunger is that it pushes us to make some kind of arrangement to fix it – in other words, it ignites the hunt. Makes perfect sense that God would not only allow but would want us to hunt for more.
John 6:35 reads, “I am the bread of life.” Jesus makes this declaration not as a side dish or appetizer, but offers this to those who were fasting – those who were starving! Although I am far from starving, I am constantly hit with cravings. I crave to feel protected. I crave to feel connected. I crave to feel fought for.
I’m going to ask you the same thing we were asked in our homework assignment: What are you truly craving today? Do not let the enemy tempt you by satisfying a physical or emotional need over seeking the fulfillment of a craving that can only come from the bread of life, our God. What are we doing too much of, what have we set unrealistic expectations for, what cries from our heart are we ignoring? We will never be satisfied this side of Heaven, we will continue to consume, consume, consume while here on this earth . The big question at stake here is what are you consuming?
This is not me prodding into your actual diet; you don’t need to go out and buy a loaf of bread. Gluten free and low-carb folk are welcome to this message too because the bread I am referring to isn’t just any bread. This bread is something we have craved since the beginning of time, it is the bread of life. Something that fills not a temporary, physical nourishment but an eternal nourishment. Whether you are feeling starved today or fighting a craving a great place to start is to simply remember your blessings. A hardened heart will likely miss an opportunity so it’s worth putting aside your “I feel too ___ to be thankful” to allow yourself to praise God and speak a blessing.
I needed to be reminded that our cravings can serve a purpose and maybe you need that reminder today, too. Go out this week, work for your bread, and be intentional in seeking comforts that are with God.
Written By: Ashley Elliott