This year we are focusing on developing the passion and practice of studying God’s Word. Engaging it in such a way that we do not emerge unchanged but deepened from the encounter. Time is key in this pursuit.
The Psalmist meditated day and night in His law. He consistently ran to His holy book, and when he did, it was not for a casual read.
Sometimes we can schedule blocks of time; often though, our routine implodes as the day moves on. I want to encourage you in two ways: do the best you can, and, you will never regret the effort you put into it.
Time allows for the truth of God’s Word to penetrate our heart, settle our mind, calm our spirit, lift our countenance, refresh our soul, calibrate our perspective and strengthen our frame. It’s what the Spirit uses to build us up and apply His work in us. Someteims we are rushed and miss the benefits. It’s as if time isn’t really important in the vertical anyway. I mean, what does time have to do with a relationship, anyway?
Said no woman ever.
And, said no kid to his or her dad, ever.
Time matters. Why do we think any differently when it comes to God’s Word? As much as it lies in your control, diligently invest time to reflect on His truth. The more time we invest, the greater the dividend. Know up front that it requires effort, intentional effort. There will always be a million more entertaining options before us. Or, twice as many fires to put out. But I have never met a saint who regretted investing time in the Word. And I’ve never met a seasoned saint who did not acknowledge the effort that was required.
But let me say this. In order to extract the riches of God’s Word, there must be a settled determination to give it the time and respect it deserves. We get out of it what we put in. One does not sculpt abs without investing time and effort, just as one does not play the piano for a few days and expect to be called Beethoven.
So the next time you plan on binge watching your favorite series or drop hours watching the playoffs, ask yourself this question: am I neglecting the pursuit of God’s Word to do this? If His Word falls to the wayside, it’s time to rearrange priorities and adjust the schedule. You won’t regret it!
I promise you, when you invest the time to reflect upon and study God’s precious Truth, you will not be disappointed. It takes effort and often requires sacrifice but is more than worth it. In the weeks to come we will look at the many benefits of engaging the Word, as well as practical ways to do so. I always think of my grandparents, who well into their 80’s beamed with the joy of the Lord and their love for each other. Through all their trials and heartaches, they grew more joyful, not grumpier.
They knew their Lord and they knew Him well. And never could contain that infectious joy.