World Hunger is a serious social concern for our generation. I would argue that it is an even larger concern than terrorism, nuclear arms, drugs, and global warming. After all, does destroying the planet really mean anything to the people who are starving? There are more hungry people in the world than the combined populations of America, Canada, and the European Union. ONE in SEVEN people will go to bed hungry tonight. For me, that is a number that I cannot even wrap my head around. I wonder if people who are starving become so tolerant of the pain that they cease to notice it? Many young people in the cities where I live work and play are dependent upon the school lunch program for most, if not all of their food. Some of their lives are touched by good people who donate food to stuff in the backpacks that these kids carry to school. A jar of peanut butter might be their only sustenance over the weekend, but it is nutritious and most children like it.
As I sit here in my warm house that has a freezer and cabinets full of food, I wonder how many people also suffer a hunger for God. Lack of food nutrients results in death, and I imagine that it is a painful way to leave our carnal world. Lack of spiritual sustenance results in eternal death – one that is most certainly filled with pain and torture that never ends. I think Church is like the school lunch program. It feeds our hunger to some degree, but it is not enough to keep us from starving. How do we feed the hunger for God? Does it come from within or without? Do people who are starving for God build up a tolerance that masks the pangs? I think perhaps this is true. Otherwise, it would not be so difficult for me to make God a part of every decision I make throughout the day. I know I need a LOT of extra spiritual calories, but I have not quite figured out where they come from.
All I know to do right now is open my heart and pray, “God, please feed my hunger. You and Your Son are the only ones who can stuff my backpack.”