Scripture. God's Word. The Bible.
What do those words mean to you?
Do you consider the Word of God as useful in your own daily life? Does it seems strange that a ordinary book on your shelf could be so important to every day decision making, behavior choosing, life happenings?
If I was asked this in 2004, I would have said nope -- it is just an old book with old guys opinions in it. That was of course before I actually read it. That was before someone explained how the bible is inspired by the Holy Spirit and then I witnessed God using it to introduce Himself more deeply to me. How can I even put into words what it is like to sit with the bible, open up a page (even a seemingly random page) and have a message jump off the pages that you KNOW is just for you -- for that day and in that moment! It is crazy ... it is crazy cool but it is still crazy.
What other book on your shelf can you pick up day after day and learn from, be moved by, feel as if someone is talking JUST to you? For me the answer to that question is NONE! No other book draws me in - every day - like the Holy Bible. None.
OK, but how does that happen, how do I get from not even owning one, to having some so tattered I have to 'retire' them? Simple.
Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom he gives. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts. Col 3:16 (NLT)
One summer I felt the nudge to use The Purpose Driven Life to host a short 6 week series for the women of my parish. I had never done anything like this before, but the more I felt the scriptures opening my heart to Jesus and helping me to really hear His voice in my life, the more I felt called to share this with others. First, I had to obtain permission from my Pastor. The odds of him allowing a bible newbie to facilitate a group on the scriptures, never-mind that the newbie was using a non-Catholic book as her guide, were slim. I fretted for days on how to proceed. I even considered asking the Congregational Church if I could hold a group there. My husband, who generally stays out of my fretting, insisted I needed to ask our priest first. One Friday afternoon, he got me so worked up over the matter, that I grabbed my PDL book and stormed out the door with a, "FINE, whatever, I'll just drive over there right now and ask him!"
See, it was Friday, my Pastor's day off, so the drama was mostly for show - but I still went through with the motions. As I drew closer to the Church, there was road construction. Now, I am not the greatest of drivers, I am cautious but not always accurate. The idea of having to navigate through treacherous roads between a gaping hole in the earth and the kind police officer waving me on, did NOT incite me to see this mission any further, when suddenly this verse entered my heart...
For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline. 2 Timothy 1:7
How could I receive such a clear message and not continue on -- especially since I was CONVINCED this would all be for not, because Father was never, ever, ever at the Parish on Fridays. Ever.
I navigated through the maze of trucks, workers and police - all gratefully unscathed. I drove around the corner and into the parking lot, and there standing directly in front of me ... IN THE PARKING LOT ... was my Pastor. The abridged end to this story (which was filled with many more God moments) was this -- I knew exactly how to present the idea to him, that he felt confident the Spirit was guiding it, and gave me permission. Purpose Driven Summer was in the works ... but little did I know God was only getting started with revealing his plan for me through his word.... stay tuned next week as the story continues.
When has the word of God prompted you to act confidently or boldly? If you have not experienced this yet, where would you like the Spirit to move in such a way in your life?