Hungry for More of GodHungry for More of God
Rob Currie
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Hungry for More of God was written to whet our appetite and satisfy our desire for the Almighty. It serves up Scriptural insights with a fresh recipe whose ingredients include large portions of vivid contemporary illustrations, a pinch of professional psychological insight, a dash of humor, and generous helpings of stories and quotations from the lives and writings of Billy Graham, Philip Yancey, C.S. Lewis, Dorothy Sayers, Charles Spurgeon, D.L. Moody, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, and many more. Dr. Currie's focus is on the millions of Christians who hunger for a deeper and closer walk with God. His emphasis is different than most deeper walk books, though--it's not just on our vertical relationship with God, but also on our horizontal relationship with each other. Dr. Currie shows that our horizontal relationships must be in order if we want to truly deepen our relationship with the Lord.
     

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Dr. Rob Currie is psychology professor at Judson College, Elgin, Illinois. He earned his B.A. in pscyhology from Cornerstone University and his Ph.D. in experimental psychology from St. Louis University. He was awarded the Best Writer award at the 2001 Write-To-Publish conference at Wheaton College. Dr. Currie and his wife Kay, life in Elgin, Illinois with their two sons, Samuel and Steven.
Christianbook.com: What inspired you to write Hungry for More of God?

Dr. Currie: One of my deepest joys is to study the Bible and share its transforming truth with others. One of my deepest burdens is for Christians to know more about how glorious God is. This book is the result of these two forces in my life. Augustine declared that “You have made us for yourself, and our heart is restless until it rests in you.” I wrote the book to awaken our hunger for God and show how He satisfies our deepest longings.

I did not originally intend to write a book. Thirteen years ago I began a long-term study of Bible characters. As I studied, I was repeatedly moved by what I discovered and it seemed natural to go from such excitement about the word of God to sharing it with others. As a result, about ten years ago, I began preaching regularly in churches. The positive feedback from audiences encouraged me to develop the material into a book.

We serve a gracious God who begins by giving us a burden to do something for Him, continues by giving us what we need to accomplish it, and ends by blessing us for doing it.

Christianbook.com: The primary metaphor you use for our relationship to God is hunger. This metaphor is effective both because of its biblical foundations (i.e., Isa. 55:1-2; Jn. 6:35) and because hunger is such a common human experience. Your book does an excellent job of explaining how every human experience, including suffering, sharing our faith and even failure, can enable us to cultivate our hunger for God. However, while reading the book I wondered, how can we cultivate a hunger for God when we are in the midst of our more mundane activities such as another Monday morning at the office or the daily grind of household chores?

Dr. Currie: A soldier in the battle zone is not bored during breakfast in a foxhole just because no bullets whiz by him at the moment. Instead, his keen awareness of what is at stake in the conflict gives urgency and meaning to everything he does. In a similar fashion, Christians are described as engaged in spiritual warfare (Ephesians 6). Keeping this perspective in mind helps us realize that spiritually significant events occur, even on mundane Monday mornings. In his essay, “The Weight of Glory”, C.S. Lewis reminds us of the importance of everyday interactions with other people. He writes, “It is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub, and exploit.”

When we pack our daughter’s lunch before she walks to school, are we routinely making a bologna sandwich, or are we thinking about what she might learn that day to prepare her to grow up to be a mature woman of God? When we attend the umpteenth meeting with the boss, are we only thinking of agenda items or are we alert to the possibility that God may prompt us to offer a word of encouragement or a silent prayer?

Christianbook.com: Your use of scripture indicates that you are a man who has not only understood, but has allowed himself to be shaped by the stories of Scripture. How can we learn to allow the stories of Scripture to shape our lives in a similar manner?

Dr. Currie: It begins by deciding whether or not the Bible is the most important book ever written. If it is, then we should throw ourselves energetically into studying it. We should approach it with enthusiasm, believing that it is laden with spiritual treasures and the Holy Spirit is eager to help us dig them up. When I study the Bible, one of my favorite prayers is “Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in your law” (Psalm 119:18). It is a prayer God delights to hear and answer.

Christianbook.com: You note in your introduction that "Many Christians experience a gnawing spiritual hunger because we find that the good things in life, including love relationships, careers, and recreational pursuits, fail to satisfy our deepest longings." What are some effective ways that we can determine whether these false hungers are hindering our pursuit of God?

Dr. Currie: Jesus warned, “Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matthew 6:21). Expanding that a bit, I have found that wherever I spend a great deal of money, time, or energy, I will probably be tempted to love that person, possession, or hobby more than God. Most of us need help to see what’s getting in the way of our relationship with God. But if we ask God and a few trusted friends to tell us, we will discover which good things are dulling our appetite for God.

Christianbook.com: I think it is safe to assume that all of us are "hungry for more" depth in our prayer lives. In your chapter on prayer you note that "If you're hungry for more in your relationship with God, make a point of expressing every bit of hunger in your prayers" (page 25). How have you learned to develop this hunger for prayer in your personal life? Do you have any tips or advice for us?

Dr. Currie: I Peter 5:7 urges us, “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” As an occasional exercise in prayer, I recommend that Christians make a “worry list.” Write down the top five or ten things that concern you at the moment. Then pray about each item, one at a time. Tell God your hopes and fears in regard to each. Hold nothing back.

For example, if you are praying for your son in Junior High, don’t settle for asking God to help him have a good day at school. Plead with God to make your son a powerful prayer warrior. Ask God to develop him into a devout Christian young man that peers will turn to in times of spiritual need. Tell God your fears about your son’s weaknesses of character and share with God your excitement about the budding talent your son displays.

Then pray for the next person or issue with equal intensity and specificity. When you finish going through your list, praise God for caring about your concerns and praise him for his attributes. If you do this, you will have an intense prayer experience and sweet fellowship with the Savior.

Christianbook.com:  Your book includes a wonderful variety of quotations from a diverse group of authors. It was delightful to read a book that quotes Augustine and Nietzsche as well as Thomas a Kempis and Anne Lamott. What authors are currently influencing you? Or perhaps I could ask, what other voices are you currently holding sway in your head?

Dr. Currie: If this book is a chocolate chip cookie, the stories and quotations from the lives and writings of men and women of faith are the chocolate chips. God put it on my heart to write a book with lots of chocolate chunks.

Other than the Bible, the books that influence me the most are those by C.S. Lewis and Alexander Whyte. This summer I greatly enjoyed reading Prayer by O. Hallesby. God is currently using these books and others to challenge me to have a God-centered life. Left to my own devices, I often live a self-centered rather than a God-centered life.

It does not come naturally, but a God-centered life is a much richer way to live. Jesus said, “Whoever loses his life for me will find it” (Matthew 16:25). In Mere Christianity, C.S. Lewis concurs, “The more we get what we now call “ourselves” out of the way and let Him take us over, the more truly ourselves we become.”

I am so thankful that the Holy Spirit works in my heart to show me how my life can be more about Him and less about me.

Thank you for your time, Dr. Currie. After reading your book and noting the positive effect it had upon my life I have little doubt that those who read it will develop a deeper Hunger for God.