Friday, January 16th, 2015
All Things New (Part 16)
Your New Food*
At this point His disciples came, and they marveled that He talked with a woman; yet no one said, 'What do You seek?' or, 'Why are You talking with her?'
The woman then left her waterpot, went her way into the city, and said to the men, 'Come, see a Man who told me all things that I ever did. Could this be the Christ?' Then they went out of the city and came to Him.
In the meantime His disciples urged Him, saying, 'Rabbi, eat.'
But He said to them, 'I have food to eat of which you do not know.'
Therefore the disciples said to one another, 'Has anyone brought Him anything to eat?'
Jesus said to them, 'My food is to do the will of Him Who sent Me, and to finish His work. Do you not say, 'There are still four months and then comes the harvest?' Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest! And he who reaps receives wages, and gathers fruit for eternal life, that both he who sows and he who reaps may rejoice together. For in this the saying is true: 'One sows and another reaps.' I sent you to reap that for which you have not labored; others have labored, and you have entered into their labors.'
John 4:27-38 (NKJV)
Actors, models and talent for Christ: we live in a food-dominated culture. America is not only the richest large nation on earth, it is also the fattest.**
Surely, Jesus revealed the enormity of this stumbling block when He faced Satan in the desert. By enemy suggestion, hunger was His #1 temptation. Of course, the only sinless Man declined.
How many times have I given in to ungodly hunger? I can't possibly remember, and I hope God chooses to forget. Making food our priority is the most obvious example of the battle between the flesh and the Spirit. But if food is our most common idol, then rounding out America's top five might be: 2) wealth, 3) power, 4) beauty, and 5) celebrity.
Actors, models and talent for Christ, here's your entrance: Like Jesus, you have food to eat that others do not know. Namely, the 'Bread of Life' (John 6:35). This Nourishment must become crystal clear to your family, friends and fans.
I also believe John 4:1-42 beautifully describes your mission in the entertainment industry.*** Consider this interpretation: 1) Even when you're tired and hungry, you open yourself to every outsider God places in your path; 2) An honest sinner can be closer to salvation than a hypocritical Christian...
3) Worship is about Spirit and truth, not walls and rules; 4) By the way of media, today's fields are ripe for harvest; 5) By the Hand of God, you have entered into the labor of the enemy, because Christians looked the other way while he worked the globe.
To Be Continued...
* Excellent article in Focus Magazine: Challenging Discipleship: 'I have food to eat that you do not know about:' http://focusmagazine.org/challenging-discipleship-i-have-food-to-eat-that-you-do-not-know-about.php
** America is the fattest nation on earth: http://health.usnews.com/health-news/health-wellness/articles/2014/05/28/america-tops-list-of-10-most-obese-countries
** America is the richest (per capita) large nation on earth: http://www.worldatlas.com/articles/the-10-richest-nations-in-the-world.htm
*** John 4:1-42: https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=john+4%3A1-42&version=NKJV
NOTE TO PERFORMERS STRUGGLING WITH FOOD OR OTHER PHYSICALLY ATTRACTIVE STUMBLING BLOCKS: Check out Romans 7:14-25. (I am linking The Message interpretation: https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans+7%3A14-25&version=MSG)
Paul perfectly describes a Christian's frustration with these fleshly temptations. Our Answer? The same as his: Jesus. We must connect with our Victory so strongly that the last fruit of the Holy Spirit is evident in our lives: self-discipline. I am not bragging like I'm there. I stumble too often to claim any prize (yet), so I am a work in progress. But if you're in that contest with me, you and I need to admit our dependence on God. And with Him, we work out our own salvation (from fleshly temptations) with fear and trembling.
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the All Things New series.