Rom. 8:26 ¶ Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.
Have you ever been hungry? I know we kind of get hungry every day, but I mean really hungry. Some people live with hunger every day of their lives. There are the garbage dump kids in Manila and the street kids in Eastern Europe, there are also parts of Africa that experience famines from time to time. It seems that when you are really hungry, NOTHING ELSE REALLY MATTERS. The world stands still until you can get some food in your belly. Those are the groanings of hunger pains that Jesus spoke of in His Sermon on the Mount and Paul describes in today’s scripture verse. When spiritual hunger pains set in nothing else seems to matter. You need food, spiritual food, and you need it now. Charles Spurgeon talks about this kind of groaning in the following quote.
“It is well to have longings, and the more intense they are the better. The LORD will satisfy soul-longings, however great and all-absorbing they may be. Let us greatly long, for God will greatly give. We are never in a right state of mind when we are contented with ourselves and are free from longings. Desires for more grace and groanings which cannot be uttered are growing pains, and we should wish to feel them more and more. Blessed Spirit, make us sigh and cry after better things and for more of the best things!
Hunger is by no means a pleasant sensation. Yet blessed are they that hunger and thirst after righteousness. Such persons shall not only have their hunger relieved with a little food, but they shall be filled. They shall not be filled with any sort of rough stuff, but their diet shall be worthy of their good LORD, for they shall be filled with goodness by Jehovah Himself.”
I can remember the months just prior to my conversion in 1973. I was losing my “taste” for the pleasures of this world that I was trying to feed my soul with. The things I once enjoyed had lost their enjoyment in my life, I knew there was more; I just didn’t know where and what it was. The Lord was stirring my heart with a different kind of hunger, I was beginning to experience a spiritual hunger which I had never been familiar with. I was been drawn by the fragrance of this heavenly bread. I was becoming hungry for God. When Christ came into my life it was like I tasted real food for the first time. I began to experience a strange irony or conflict in my experience. It a strange way my hunger was abated, I was satisfied with Jesus. But here is the conflicting part, at the same time a ravenous hunger began to gnaw at my soul. I had to have more of this food, now I knew nothing else would do for me. Almost forty years have passed since that first meal yet the conflict continues in me. I am satisfied with Jesus but my soul longs for more.