A couple weeks ago I was in an Encounter staff meeting when Blake Wiggins asked us to dream with God for a few minutes about what our semester could look like. The word that came to mind for me was “hunger” and I wrestled with God over what that meant.

I feel like last semester hunger for more of God was something I was familiar with so this semester I dreamed that other staff and students would feel hungry for more like I was. I was dwelling on the question, “How can I make others hungry?” when I realized that I can’t. Hunger is between a person’s brain and his stomach, neither of which I can successfully influence. I decided to re-approach the problem by asking “How have others made me hungry?”. I thought of smelling authentic Korean food in my old neighborhood as I would drive by houses of people who ate together in their open garages. I remembered the immediate awareness of the emptiness in my stomach when I saw fresh food on the kitchen counter that one of my roommates had spent time preparing. Then I felt God impress on my heart the words “get cooking.”

Hunger for God in other people is not something I can produce, but I can inspire a need for more of God by feeding my own spirit and letting those around witness. They can catch a taste or sight of what God is doing to fill me up and their desire for the same will most likely be a natural response.

Practically, this looks like talking about what God is teaching you or doing in your life. You don’t have to preach sermons to your friends or constantly redirect casual conversations to your most recent encounter, but be intentional not to hinder your heart’s overflow and allow yourself to speak about what you like about God.

If you don’t feel like you’re overflowing with things to say about God, then your focus can be to cultivate hunger in yourself. Taste and see for yourself and you will want more. A basic human principle is that we like what makes us feel good so experiencing the Author and Source of all goodness is a lot easier than we often make it out to be. Read the Word and believe it, ask your discipleship group for testimonies of what God is doing in their lives, read books on famous revivals, go to church. When you see what is possible, you’ll want it, too.

Another basic human principle is that healthy people get hungry. If you don’t feel spiritually hungry, pursue health spiritually. There is no shame in this. I’m for sure not as healthy physically as I could be but the pursuit of physical health is life-giving to me, not condemning. Practically, this could look like receiving inner healing from emotional wounds like you would get a broken bone fixed. Consistently get in God’s presence like you might consistently go to the gym; it shouldn’t be routine or religious but empowering and full of reward.

As you put all this into practice, let Matthew 5:6 anchor you and motivate you. Jesus spoke blessing over the hungry and promised that they will be satisfied. This is what He has for you and nothing less.

Author | Savannah Ugan