THE SEARCH for "HUNGER" 
-by Andrew Strom.

A few years ago I heard my friend David Servant give a teaching
which changed my life quite profoundly. He was speaking about the
fact that Jesus told His disciples to focus on the "hungry" people
and those who 'receive' the message - and literally to leave the
others behind. Jesus was actually very insistent on this. He
specifically instructed his disciples, "If they do not receive you in
this town, shake the dust off your feet and go to the next town"
and "Do not cast your pearls before swine".

To many of us this is a very radical way of thinking. But it is actually
the commandment of God. Why? Because God does not want His
servants all over the world to be stuck wasting years and years on
"un-hungry" people! He wants them to be productive - to bear much
fruit - to be where the hungry ones are who will gladly receive their
word. And sometimes whole nations are basically hungry while
others are basically sleepy, lukewarm and complacent. We know
this from history.

Recently while in Wales, David Servant made the same point again
in regard to Revival. He pointed out that it is not just Prayer and
Repentance preaching that are the main keys to Revival. There
must also be a basic HUNGER amongst the people in order for
any kind of real Awakening to take hold. Complacency, apathy,
materialism and lukewarmness can kill any Revival stone dead -
almost before it starts.

Sometimes "calamity" must come to produce such a hunger. Other
times it has been poverty or war. In the Eastern Bloc countries it
was the fall of Communism that produced a massive hunger for a
period, and thousands came to the Lord - but this seemed to last
only a few years. "Hunger" is certainly a very big key to Revival.

Personally, one of the things I try to look for when visiting countries
these days is the level of Hunger that seems to prevail in the land.
In the last couple of years I have ministered in almost every corner
of the Western world - USA, UK, Australia, New Zealand, South
Africa, Europe. I always have high hopes that I will find regions of
real Hunger - the kind that I often see in the Third World. But sadly
this is a rare occurrence in the West. Of course there is a 'remnant'
everywhere. And I was encouraged by what I saw in South Africa.
But basically we need to face the fact that the West is asleep -
barely hungry at all - though there are a few glimmers of hope
starting to appear because of the recession.

Wales is sadly another example of this - in some ways the saddest
of all. 100 years ago Wales was the most alive, hungry, spiritual
powerhouse in the world. And yet today the people show little
interest, the chapels stand empty, and apathy reigns supreme.
We have been going into pubs in Wales, talking to the "common
man" about it all. Most have never even heard of the Welsh Revival -
and hardly give Christianity the slightest thought. Terribly sad. But
we aim to keep our pub ministering up for the six months or so
that we are here. Much of the Western world is almost as bad.
Lulled to sleep by too much entertainment, comfort and materialism.
In Wales many worship football far more fervently than they worship God.

So what do we do about all of this? Where do we go? What would
God have us doing? For me, Africa is the place of "hunger" that God
has been sending me to for year after year. For you it may be
someplace else. Pray about it. Don't just sit and "vegetate". God
wants you fruitful. He didn't design you to just sit and sit forever.
Be up and about the Lord's business! Do you realize that we are
living in the most exciting times of Revival that Asia and South
America and Africa have ever seen? Get up! Get involved! You are
not designed to miss out on this! There is hunger all over the world,
and such a terrible shortage of laborers. The call of God is to "Go"!

I know that some in the West find pockets of hunger in the prisons
or amongst Refugees coming into the country, etc. These may be
very good places to check out. But either way we need to start
"prioritizing" hunger the way that God prioritizes it. To Him it is of
the utmost importance. In fact, it can be the main deciding factor
of whether or not He can move powerfully amongst a people. (See
the Sermon on the Mount for proof of this in Jesus' words).

And so, to conclude, I believe we need to ask ourselves some fairly
basic questions - which indeed I have to ask myself also:
-Are we focusing our ministry on truly "Hungry" people?
-Do we 'move on' as Jesus instructed if a town or people do not
receive our word?
-Or do we hang on for year after year - sowing our precious seed
on hard and crusty soil - which is exactly what Jesus told us NOT to do?

May each of us find ourselves in the most productive and fruitful
part of God's vineyard that He has chosen for us, my friends. The
fields of much of the world are white unto harvest.

God bless you all.
Andrew Strom