Friday, August 6
My unscientific way of reading the Bible
Many months ago, many, many months - I read an article wherein the author stated they were free in Christ to not read the Bible and not to pray and they expounded on how wonderful that felt and how it had been months since they had opened God's Word and how this was a gift of grace and there was no condemnation for them.
"Those who trust in their own insight are foolish, but anyone who walks in wisdom is safe." Proverbs 28:28 NLT
How could I not feel sad for that author? How could you not sense the pride in their words and feel grief over them, the loss of reliance on their saviour, the flippant use of incredible, undeserving, divine grace to excuse their neglect?
If you are a sinner, like me, relying on our own guidance to get us through each day is not an pleasant option. God's Word to me is so much. I don't pick up my Bible in the quiet of each morning because of guilt or unseen obligation but because it is life and breath of my day. Keeping God's words settled in my mind and heart from the start of each day is what gives me strength as a mother. I think this is what people sense when they comment to me that I "must have a special gift to raise children". It's no special, only for Hannah thing, its the life and breath and sustenance available to any believer or unbeliever for what God has called you to do - and so I find myself gritting my teeth to bare comments like that one. Meditating, or keeping near in my mind, the words of strength and life of God is such an empowering, peace bringing thing.
Currently, I am reading through the books of Proverbs and the book of John and here's my simple, unscientific reasoning as to why. As a parent, I realize more each day how I need God's wisdom in raising our children and the book of Proverbs is a great place to acquire godly wisdom. My children get the benefit of my gleanings. For instance, if you ask them what starting a fight is like, they will tell you that "Starting a fight is like tearing the walls of your city down, so stop before you start". I love that most of the proverbs are simple one or two liners that are quick learning for myself and my kids.
The book of John is where I am reading about Jesus' life here on earth. I've read it, no doubt, countless times before, but now I am taking time to stop and pray over the life applications I see the holy spirit putting before me as I read. I am reading it slowly and methodically, resting on the words and letting them sink into my heart.
King David speaks about the joys and delight of meditating on God's words and laws throughout Psalm 19. "I have hidden Your word in my heart that I might not sin against you." I think that when we come to a point where we don't feel a need to read the Bible, or don't have a grieving in our spirit when we've neglected seeking to know God through His word - that is when we need to be concerned for ourselves. What greater way for us to be deceived, if our hearts and minds aren't being filled with truth on a daily basis to counteract the life, moral, and political deception presented so sweetly in the media? And this is the pot calling the kettle black, because there are certainly times in my life where I have neglected my portion of getting to know my saviour and the effort of keeping his thoughts in my thoughts.
The bookmark in my Bible marks which chapter of Proverbs I've read last. Proverbs is especially poignant and memorable and so I have no problem recalling which words I read last. In the book of John, a sticky note marks off where I will begin reading the next morning. My Bible has a home on our mantel, where I can be sure to find it when I come downstairs and where it is up from little hands during the day.
What about you? What is particular to your personal study time and what gives you strength as a mother?
Posted by Me at Friday, August 06, 2010