Gray and dreary. The weather outside matches how I’ve felt the past number of days. Overrun with melancholy, my soul hurts. I’m not totally sure why. I have some ideas. What do I do?
In 2017, Terri and I spent quite a bit of our time focused on committing verses of Scripture to memory. It sounds easy to do on the surface, but it’s proven to be more difficult then we anticipated. We certainly did a better job of it the first half of the year than the latter. But we keep trying. Perseverance.
Life is about that very thing. Perseverance. We all have dreams. We all have goals. We all have things we’d like to see, do, and experience. Life doesn’t always cooperate. Honestly, life has a mind of its own. But you can’t succumb to it. You have to press on. Just like the Apostle Paul said:
I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:14 (ESV)
Over the course of the year, I’ve had the opportunity to teach several Bible classes. I’ve talked about our journey of memorizing Scripture and why Terri and I believe it is important. Scripture urges us to commit God’s words to memory before the storm comes. The storm will come. Trouble will invade our best laid plans and overturn our good intentions. In teaching on the subject of memorizing Scripture, I’ve encountered a variety of reactions. Some that I honestly did not expect, especially from believers. I wondered…
Do we believe that God’s Word has power? Do we think that Scripture brings meaning to our life?
I have treasured Your word in my heart so that I may not sin against You.
Several discussions revealed that God’s people filling the chairs on Sunday morning don’t necessarily see the Bible as anything more than black print on white paper. And it’s not…
God’s Word has power. Even Satan knows that.
Jesus Tempted in the Wilderness
Matthew 4:1-11 (NIV)
Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. 2 After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. 3 The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.”
4 Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’]”
5 Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. 6 “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written:
“‘He will command his angels concerning you,
and they will lift you up in their hands,
so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’[c]”
7 Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’[d]”
8 Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. 9 “All this I will give you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.”
10 Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’”
11 Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him.
Through spending time in God’s Word, we get to know the Lord better. Our investment of time returns with spiritual growth and deeper understanding of who God is and the chaotic world we live in. The words of the Bible are powerful tools to help us get through our day-to-day hills and valleys. Memorizing Scripture equips for the battle, sustains us through the storm, and helps us walk humbly alongside the Lord. When we commit God’s Word to our heart, the Lord is never far from us. He is near us.
Through His Word, God is with us.
Blessed is the man
who walks not in the counsel of the wicked,
nor stands in the way of sinners,
nor sits in the seat of scoffers;
2 but his delight is in the law of the Lord,
and on his law he meditates day and night.
Psalm 1:1-3 (ESV)
No, Scripture in and of itself will not save you. Only faith in Christ can do that. But Scripture teaches us that truth. It’s through Scripture that we know that Jesus is the only path to reconciliation with God. It is through the Bible that we know that if we profess our faith in Christ then we are saved. These truths and many others are revealed to us through God’s Word. Committing that Word to our heart is a wise action to take ahead of the difficult roads we travel.
God’s Word helps see us through the days that are gray and dreary, reminding us that in Christ, we have the light that overcomes darkness.
John 1:5 (NIV)
The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.