I'm a verbal processor, so I love to share them with friends and family.
I love to read books and blogs. I appreciate words written in cards and spoken by friends and loved ones.
As 2015 was coming to a close, I felt an urging to get back into God's Word in 2016. Not that I haven't been reading it throughout the past year...I have. But I often read it as a box to check off my to-do list. Or as an aside - a few verses that add onto the words of another.
What I mean is that I'll get into a Bible Study and hang on to every word of the author. I'll read a really inspiring book that challenges me to look at my faith in a completely new way. This is great and all...but I have been asking God to increase my desire for His Word. I've been filling up so much on the words of others, that His Word has lost its appeal.
I am so thankful that He heard my prayers and has answered.
God's response came in the form of a study called "Open Your Bible". Yes, it's another Bible study, but this one is very different from other studies I've done. It was written by the founders of She Reads Truth (which I've talked about multiple times here on the blog...back when I was blogging more regularly). And while it is another Bible study, the whole premise is that:
God's Word is for me (and you)
...and it is for now.
It is for today,
...and every day of my life (and yours).
It's simple, and at the same time so profound.
Since turning the corner into 2016, I can honestly say that I've opened my Bible more. Not because I need to read God's Word for Him to love me more. Instead, I'm re-discovering that Scripture is where I find life, and rest, and peace. It's truly the place where I can meet God daily, and see Him more clearly. His Word has been inspiring me more than what others' words ever could (no matter how true or how beautifully they are articulated). I am retraining my mind to go to Him first. To approach His Word with a new attitude and anticipation of the life that will come from that time well-spent.
. . .
Here's a passage that struck me from my last week's reading (especially the part bolded below from verse 3).
I S A I A H 5 5 : 1 - 3
Come, all you who are thirsty,
come to the waters;
and you who have no money,
come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk
without money and without cost!
Why spend money on what is not bread,
and your labor on what does not satisfy?
Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good,
and you will delight in the richest of fare.
Give ear and come to me;
listen, that you may live.
I will make an everlasting covenant with you,
my faithful love promised to David.
. . .
The Lord wants us to come to him, and to listen; this, He promises will bring us LIFE!
This is what my heart has been longing for. I look to so many others (who are talented, truth-telling, inspired, creative people) and all the while I've been feeling like something was missing. For me, I discovered that it was because I wasn't going straight to the source. I think the the words and creativity of others will bring my life, but in reality - my life comes from the Word of God.
So that's what I'm working on this year. I don't have a "New Year's Resolution" or a "word" for the year. simple act of coming and listening and receiving the life that Jesus alone can give me.
It's so freeing! So inspiring! To know that the Creator wants me to come...He wants to share His words, with me...today and every day!