Did you get some quiet time yet? I hope you engaged with yesterday’s challenge to find some time for solitude in your life. Honestly, I did not get much yesterday myself as we had a house full for the National Championship Game. Did you watch the game? It was a nail biter all the way through. Even if you did not have a dog in the fight it was a great game. Being that I live no more that thirty minutes from the Alabama line there were plenty of flags flying high this morning. Every time I watch these amazing athletes it reminds me of how incredibly dedicated they are. If you pay attention, many of the top athletes are also great students in the classroom as well. Their lives are centered around prioritizing what’s most important.
I shared the story of a former student of mine last Sunday. I am so proud of this man for the things he has accomplished and will accomplish. When most kids were home or hanging out with friends Tyler was on the practice field kicking and punting for hours. Because of the hours of practice, sweat and blood he is now kicking for Notre Dame and I’m hopeful to watch him on Sundays in a few years.
We all have heard these kind of stories before. Who will be telling your story? You do know that God has created you for greatness, don’t you? This whole sermon series and articles are meant to help you engage at a deeper level of spiritual discipline. Those guys who played so hard last night did not just jump on the field and play. What you saw was the culmination of years and countless hours training for that very day.
As we continue to dig into the spiritual disciplines this is how we train for the moments God uses us to change lives. Yesterday we talked about solitude and today I thought about the simple action of reading God’s Word. You say, “Yea, yea I’ve heard that a million times!” I feel the same way, but isn’t it always the simple things we know that become the hardest to do? As we forge ahead please don’t get overwhelmed at all that God expects from you. After church the first Sunday of this series a seasoned runner reminded me that people don’t start by running a marathon but a mile. I know how these things go. You start feeling guilty because Pastor Greg said we need to read the Bible more and all I can get through is a chapter before my head is swimming. So, that’s where we start this conversation…
It’s not about how fast or far you run, but just the fact you are up and moving is victory in itself. My first challenge to you is simple – to begin. To pick a moment in your day and open up your Bible or app and simple begin. Don’t even get bogged down in this moment of where you start, just begin. Pick something like John, one of the Apostles or proverbs and go. I’m not even asking you to be a Bible scholar and pull out the Bible dictionary or concordance. No, I want you to just read. I love to read. I have to admit I’m a sci-fi, dystopian, stuff blowing up kind of guy. I like action, adventure, thrillers and leave all those mushy stories to Becky. If you pick up God’s word you quickly find those same genres all throughout. We read of battles, wars, conflict, adventures and yes ladies there is lots of mushy stuff. In addition there is life, hope, love and truth. Wow, have you ever thought of it that way? Being a long time Bible student I used to look at the Bible as just information. “I need to know this stuff just so I can defend my faith!” While that is true lets not lose the beauty of the stories, drama, poetry and love we see cover to cover.
If I had to somehow put the Bible in a single literary genre it would have to be a romance story. Each and every word on it’s pages is one truly romantic story between God and His people. I encourage you to find a comfy chair, grab a blanket, definitely some coffee and begin.
ThAbIt – PG
These are a few of the websites I use on a regular basis as I read and study