That Championship Hunger: Are You Hungry Enough To Do Whatever It Takes

Posted: December 14, 2014 in Uncategorized

Luke 6:20-23 — What distinguishes a championship team from those that do not win championships. I think it is as much as this one thing as it whether you have accumulated the most talent or not. Championship teams are those that are hungry for the title. Those teams that are hungry for the title are willing to do the extra work. They are willing to put in the extra time. They are willing to make sacrifices. They think more about their team and their band of brothers than they do about their own personal glory. They realize that without team glory there will be no personal glory. These concepts lead us to the subject of our second visit to this passage, Luke 6:20-23. Today, we will talk about Luke 6:21 where Jesus says, “blessed are you who are hungry now for you shall be satisfied.”

What did Jesus mean by that? Just like yesterday, He is saying stuff that just seems in contradiction to what we normally think. The first thing that I see here is that Jesus sees a follower of his as being a person that is never satisfied with their own righteousness and that they will always be striving for greater levels of understanding of the Scriptures, greater levels of spirituality, greater levels of human service so as to continually be striving to be more like Jesus. Notice the verb choices here. Jesus say “those who hunger now”. These are present tense verbs. Thus no matter when you read this, it’s going to be about “right now.” Forever, right now! This means what you think it means then; we are to be forever in a state of hunger. Developing Christian character is thus a journey and not a destination. This is a direct slap to the Jewish religious establishment of Jesus’ day and is just as much a slap to us today in that we often as Christians get into the mode of thinking that we have arrived and that we have cornered the market on being good (all the while judging those who don’t meet our standards). When you are hungry, just like a championship team, you are willing to do what it takes to get better. When you get satisfied, you lose momentum. You lose forward movement. You lose that “in our heart desire” to achieve. Jesus wants us hungry. Jesus wants us to realize that we are not champions yet. He wants us to put in the hard work, the extra work. He wants us to serve Him not just when it’s convenient, not just when it’s 80 degrees outside on a summer weekend. He wants to be so hungry to serve Him that we will do it in the driving snow on a cold winter’s day. He wants us to serve Him daily and not just think that participating in church events for the community when it’s convenient to our schedule that we have served Him. That’s not how championship teams work. They don’t work out when it’s convenient. We gotta be so hungry for Jesus not just in works but in prayer, and in study. Some people complain that they don’t have time to study the Bible. All I say is make time. Champions get up at 4am and go the gym to lift weights. Champions train on days they don’t feel like it. Champions run in the rain. Champions have the desire. Jesus wants us to desire Him so much that we are willing to do whatever it takes to win the championship – the expansion of God’s kingdom. Champions are hungry. Are you on Jesus’ team? Are you doing whatever it takes? Am I? Following Jesus means more than serving when it’s convenient. Following Jesus requires a championship attitude, a hungry attitude.

The second thing that you see here in Jesus’ hunger is a call to action. In being hungry in the literal sense, there is a sense of urgency. When you are really hungry, you know that urgent feeling. I gotta get some food. I gotta get some food now. You have to change the game. You are hungry and you go after anything that will change the current status. Have you ever been like sick hungry where you run in the house and just devour anything that is in the fridge? You are so hungry that you will eat just about anything. You have the urgency to change the current status of things. That is the way it is with championship teams too. They have seen what the championship looks like but they have fallen short in the past. They become hungry for the championship. So much so that they are willing to do whatever it may be to change the current status of things. If changes are needed for them to be champions, they are willing to make those changes. They have grown weary with not winning the championship. They want things to change. They are hungry and willing to make those changes even in the smallest details.

We as Christians should have this same attitude. Instead of sitting in our ivory towers and talking about the fact that our world has gone to hell and insulating ourselves from it, we should get out in the world and engage it. Instead of protesting against it, we must engage and change it. We must be so hungry to end injustice that we attack the problem and change it. If we are hungry, we have urgency. If we are hungry, we seek to change things now, not later. If we are hungry, we grab social problems by the horns and deal with them in Christian ways (not protest but meeting needs, loving, and changing things from the inside out). If we are hungry, we get involved instead of just throwing money at the problem. If we are hungry, we participate in the process instead of sitting on the sidelines. Have you ever seen a hungry person talk about the fact that he wished he could get filled up not not doing anything about it? They do something about it. We should be so hungry for the world to know Jesus and to know the truths of Scripture that we engage the world around and tell them of the love of Jesus. Tell them of the forgiveness of their sins. Tell them of salvation in Jesus Christ. We should encounter the world in a loving way so that we earn the right from the inside to demonstrate and teach biblical principles to a society that desperately needs it. The hungry are desperate to change things about this world that go against the love of God. We should be so hungry to change things that we get off the couch. Whiners never win. Winners never whine. They take action.

Championships are never won sitting on the couch playing Xbox games. Championships require blood, sweat and tears. Championships require extra work. Championships require dedication. Championships require extra effort, the attention to detail. Championships require more than just lip service. Championships require a hunger! Are you hungry? Are you willing to change the status quo? Are you willing to fight to change the world for Jesus?

Father, instill in me a hunger to do whatever it takes to serve you. Instill in me a hunger to know you more. Instill in me a desire to understand your Word more. Instill in me a hunger to change the world for you. Instill in me a champion’s attitude that I am willing to do whatever it takes to change the world for you. Lord, please, please help me to be hungry. Help me to have that urgency. Help me to make the sacrifices that are necessary to align myself with your Will. Help me to want so badly to please you that I am willing to change the world for you. Amen.

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