About This Blog

Monday, October 22, 2012

"Spirit Hunger" (Gari Meacham)

TITLE: Spirit Hunger: Filling Our Deep Longing to Connect with God
AUTHOR: Gari Meacham
PUBLISHER: Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2012, (208 pages).

Are you hungry? Do we love Jesus as we claim to be? Do we really want to know Him more? How much do we long for God? This book touches on three movements of the spirit: A heart that longs; a heart that seeks; and a heart that moves, to WANT to connect with God. Popular speaker and Bible teacher, Gari Meacham seeks to help readers do exactly that. These words essentially captures the essence of the author's heart. Note that "i" is intentionally in small letter to symbolize the author's view of smallness in oneself when compared to God.

"i believe there is a deep place of engaging God — of needing him, wanting him, and enjoying him. i don’t want to be a committed Christian; i want to be a desperate Christian." (15)

Meacham argues that we long for purpose, for affirmation, for intimacy, but often, we do not get them. By ourselves, we fight the spiritual warfare, poorly equipped, and greatly outgunned.  Our desire for self-control instead of surrendering to God, is one of the biggest culprits for our lack of spiritual connection with God. We wander around on our own strengths. We wonder why God is not near us. We fail to see the presence of God as we bask in the world of worry and anxiety. It is because we fail to connect with God, we deal with pain in ways that are unhelpful to ourselves. Men tend to deal with it outwardly through indulgence in worldliness, while women deal with pain inwardly through worry and regret. Thankfully, a makeover is possible. A heart that longs is good, but it needs to long for God for true fulfilment.

Part Two brings in what it means to seek God with our whole heart. We need to engage God in frequent and earnest prayer. We need to replace formula, stale and repetitive praying with simply the notion of simplicity in asking. Just show up with God. Bang on doors. Want God so bad that we will spend time with Him. Know how He talks and stays silent. Pant for God like a deer. Then hear God speak. The process of a breakthrough is helpful.

"I am afflicted.
Remember me, Lord. Don’t forget me.
I cry out my request.
I will have a role in this commitment.
I don’t care who is watching.
I have been pushed to a point of desperation.
I am no longer sad. I have release as I trust you, Lord." (85)
Part Three moves from this breakthrough point, toward God. In listening, one needs to adopt a humble posture that deflects focus from ourselves toward God. The "reviving posture" summons one toward a new life. The "expectant posture" provides the promise that we can hang on to. We are urged to be still, be open, be bold, and be listening to God. Meacham reminds us that prayer is not for sissies. It is for men and women who take God seriously. It requires one to be like clay, placed under the hands of the Master Potter. Her three "potter principles" are insightful for us to note.
  1. We are the clay. God is the Potter. Don't mix them up.
  2. We are unique, and we need to make sure we don't demand God to make us like some other person.
  3. We must be ready to be shaped, or reshaped, even when it means pain, slow, and mysterious.
Finally, we need to move from becoming a mere spectator at a parade, to becoming a disciple helping to create the whole parade. We need to move away from the outer circle of ACQUAINTANCE (friendly, interested only) to the next circle of PERSONAL (relational, interactive). Best of all, move toward INTIMATE where we are bound together in the love of God. We are urged to move from "bystander to partaker, from fan to teammate."

My Thoughts

This is a practical book about Christian living, of urging believers to be more desperate for God, to long for God like never before. Meacham does a great job in identifying with the perils of worldliness and the nature of self-seeking desires. With great understanding of how women thinks and feels, she shares the struggles which many can identify. She opens up her own life and shares with lots of teaching illustrations. She brings in biblical examples and teach clearly with conviction. The way she is able to weave in simple ideas through expert teaching is a mark of an effective communicator. If you are sick and tired of an aimless spiritual life. If you are ready to do something about it. If you are ready to forget about memorizing or following set prayers, but to simply ask, to seek God from a position of weakness, to knock, pound, and plead for God, this book will be a good companion for your journey of faith.

Rating; 4 stars of 5.


This book is provided to me free by Zondervan and NetGalley without any obligation for a positive review. All opinions offered above are mine unless otherwise stated or implied.

No comments:

Post a Comment