The greatest enemy of hunger for God is not poison but apple pie. It is not the banquet of the wicked that dulls our appetite for heaven, but endless nibbling at the table of the world. It is not the X-rated video, but the prime-time dribble of triviality we drink in every night. For all the ill that Satan can do, when God describes what keeps us from the banquet table of his love, it is a piece of land, a yoke of oxen, and a wife (Luke 14:18-20). The greatest adversary of love to God is not his enemies but his gifts. And the most deadly appetites are not for the poison of evil, but for the simple pleasures of earth. For when these replace an
appetite for God himself, the idolatry is scarcely recognizable, and almost incurable. John Piper
How many people do I know right now, today, whose idolatry is hardly recognized and nearly incurable? Too many. Hence, my subtitle: Pity the person who has never gotten around to living for eternity. I truly do pity those around me who really have no idea what they’re missing, and won’t until they find themselves willing to lose all that they might gain Christ. I found these riches early on, and I STILL find my appetite for God dulled by a piece of land, a yoke of oxen, or a computer. But there’s a picture in my head that God placed there the first time I entered a church again after 18 years of atheism of a hound dog chasing a rabbit with all the single-minded zeal and abandon that only a hound dog hot on the scent can exhibit. It’s that kind of energy with which I desire to follow after God.
But what things were gain to me,
those I counted loss for Christ.
Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss
for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord:
for whom I have suffered the loss of all things,
and do count them but dung,
that I may win Christ,
And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness,
which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ,
the righteousness which is of God by faith:
That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection,
and the fellowship of his sufferings,
being made conformable unto his death;
If by any means I might attain
unto the resurrection of the dead.
Not as though I had already attained,
either were already perfect: but I follow after,
if that I may apprehend that for which also
I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.
Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended:
but this one thing I do,
forgetting those things which are behind,
and reaching forth unto those things which are before,
I press toward the mark for the prize
of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.