Do you listen when God speaks?

A few months back, my husband asked me why I read the Bible everyday.  I haven’t always, but have consistently done so for the past five years.  It’s a non-negotiable part of my daily routine. My answer wasn’t fluid, wasn’t trite, wasn’t terse, and surely wasn’t thought out.  I stumbled to find the words to why I make this a priority and, after thinking it through more, I have the reason.  The reason is: why wouldn’t I?

Reading God’s Word everyday doesn’t make me a better Christian, or more devoted to Christ, or give me a deeper understanding and love for God than those who choose not to do so.  Jesus does all of that for me, for you, and for all His followers.  The drive and discipline to sit with my Bible for a daily reading is solely by the grace of God.  If it weren’t, I’d be basing my efforts on works and that won’t suffice. It’s not motivated by fear of discipline by Him, or guilt over past and present sin issues, or any emotion other than elementary reasoning.

I am a Christian.  I profess and proclaim Christ as Savior. This Christ who’s chosen me to be His has offered only one way to learn more about Him and His teachings, only one way to hear and see what He has said and done, only one way to know His heart and that one way is the Holy Bible.  These things we cannot glean from prayer alone, for the Bible is what shows us how to pray; these things we cannot receive solely from church attendance, for it is the Bible that leads all teaching; these things we cannot reap from only baptism or communion, for it is the Bible that speaks of how and why these ordinances exist.  All of the above means of grace, prayer, church fellowship, baptism, and communion, can’t be depended upon aside from the very Word of God that signifies them.  So as much as these means are of importance to living out the Christian life, it is such a simple conclusion to realize that none of them would be as they should if it weren’t for God revealing them for us in Scripture.  In summation, these means of grace fall under the umbrella that is the Bible.

The answers, or directions, to how to pray, what to pray, and the meaning of prayer are in our Bibles.  The same goes for the hows, whats, and whys for church attendance and fellowship, baptism, and the Lord’s Supper.  So, again, I ask in response to why I read the Bible everyday: for what reason wouldn’t I?  It not only contains God’s desires for the means of grace He’s provided us with, but a plethora of other proposals for readers to seek and find answers to. How else are believers going to be assured of their salvation, be enlightened by the Spirit to draw closer to the black and white issues and drawn away from the grey that this world tempts us with, correctly attempt to fulfill the Great Commission of evangelizing, or fully experience the peace that surpasses all understanding in the face of mortality without this Bible that we have at our fingertips?

So then, may I propose a question to those who haven’t developed the desire to engage Scripture on a daily basis: why aren’t you reading your Bible everyday?  I’m calling you out.  Not with an arrogance because I do so, but with love. The love that we share, as brothers and sisters in Christ, who proclaim Him as Lord over our lives, is a love for the God of the Bible.  The very Bible that we need, not should, to be reading regularly.  Any reason for not doing so is evasion. Too busy, already read it once, already know what it says, not interested in theology, tried but didn’t stick to it, already laden with group Bible studies and church activities, don’t need to because I’m already saved, so seeped in sin that I can’t bring myself to open more wounds: do it anyway.  Imagine standing before God and offering any of those excuses as to why you chose to neglect His Word because it is Him you’re avoiding each day that goes by where you don’t utilize the most majestic means of grace He has given us through His Word.

Other posts have made this same plea, but its importance bears repeating.  It should go without saying that reading the Bible is an inherent part of living as a Christian; however, it’s the one thing that is witnessed as a neglect most often. I can’t make any promises that it’ll change your life beyond personal experience, which I hesitate to use, but I can promise that doing so consistently will eventually change you, your worldview, your actions, your intentions, your heart, and your relationship with our Father.  So unless you’re not interested in changing who you are in light of God’s revealed Word, if your content with where you’re at in life, or you’re uncertain as to whether there’s any more obtainable and applicable teachings in the Bible for you, don’t heed this advisement and continue on in your complacency.  The Bible will be waiting for you when you’re ready.  The Bible that speaks the words from God that He wants us to hear.  Are you listening?

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