Today’s dawn brings us Easter and Christians will gather in droves to celebrate the resurrection of our Messiah in churches all around the globe. This day holds the heart of the gospel in that we worship a God that sacrificed Himself for our freedom in Him, saved by our Savior. To accept this truth transforms and brings gratitude to a whole new level. How do we sustain this rejoicing as we live throughout the other 364 days of the year? Simply put, read your Bible. Every day. Do so in reverence of Him and all that He is, has done, and will do. This task is the foundation to increasingly knowing God, seeing what He is up to and recognizing it (in past, present, and future) and we intrinsically know this, but this simple discipline is anything but easy.
Whatever reasons we bring to the table for why we aren’t practicing this daily are excuses. Whether it is because you’re a terribly busy parent of multiples, just not feeling the desire to dedicate the time and energy, feeling fulfilled by your time spent in Bible studies or church attendance, or even if you’re convinced that you’ve read it enough to know all you need to live righteously, nothing will excuse all that you’re missing out on by not prioritizing this as number one in your daily routine. Obviously, there come into our lives extenuating circumstances that cause us to pause the practice (i.e. hospitalization), but it is not to those that I’m directing this post. It is the followers of Christ, who claim Him as their Savior, that neglect this most basic grace in our lives.
Whenever I’m in conversation with another believer, discussing the difficulties they have going on in their spiritual life, their marriage, their families, their mental health, their work in the home or outside the home, the question I always ask is, “Are you reading your Bible?” Most often, the answer is “no.” This is not to imply that reading the Bible is going to instantly fix all of the problems that life brings, but it will do so inevitably. To claim that it will is made because making time for God’s Word immensely changes your worldview; in all the difficulties we face, soaking up Scripture makes them seemingly small in light of all that God is. Where else are we going to get the therapy needed to maintain a level head amidst the chaos that surrounds us? Where else are we going to be challenged in our inherent prideful dispositions? Where else will we be filled with what the Spirit of God definitively wants us to see and hear? Of course, we can find substitutes for all of these, but none will be more sufficient than letting the Bible be your guide.
It is true that we tend to run to God when we’re in pain or turmoil, seeking solace and begging for His healing; however, it is also true that we need to run to Him each day, approaching His always open arms to feel the warmth of His love for us. The love that created us and redeemed us right where we are, that looks upon and lives in us as we take each breath, that gave us the gift of a heart that beats for His glory. How God loves us, using terms such as “chosen” and “elect”, is assumed to be effortless on His part; but for us, how we love Him takes effort on our part. That same effort that we put into maintaining other aspects of living, such as hygiene, exercise, hydration, nourishment, socializing (via screen or face to face), is the effort that it takes to make time for God. Daily, we cleanse, we consume, we care for our bodies and if we choose not to adhere to the most basic need of our soul, it’s not only a shame, but downright neglectful of the Christ who was nailed to a cross, forsaken by God, but resurrected all for the purpose of saving us from eternal damnation. Simple in that only by faith we are saved, but the discipline it required to fulfill certainly wasn’t easy.