My walk with Christ over the past year has been such an incredible journey. A year ago, God opened my eyes to realize that He is not only my Savior and Lord of my life, He is also the LIVING GOD - the same Living God who spoke to Abraham, rescued Isaac, and extended grace to Jacob. This blew me away. At the time, I had been a Christian for 14 years, but I was just beginning to see how miraculous my God is and how involved He is in my everyday life. While I knew a lot about God and occasionally experienced intimate moments with God prior to my summer experience, I have grown so much in my walk with Christ since last May. Now I not only know about Him, I know Him.
He has taught me to recognize His voice, to respond to His Spirit, and to surrender my desires so that I may know the freedom of walking by faith, not sight. He has taught me to trust, to love, and to hope when my natural, sinful self was opposed to the pursuit of righteousness. These are not lessons that are learned once and always retained; no, these are things that God is continually teaching me and ways in which He is constantly sharpening me. To be honest, the sharpening isn't always comfortable. But deep within my soul there is peace and joy as I hope in my Savior and continue to surrender my heart to my Lord so that He may do in me the work He created me for.
As I walk with God daily, He is strengthening the roots of my faith. He is my reward. I am His and He is mine. It is a precious friendship. Abide. That is what God desires. That I may abide in Him and He in me so that I may bear fruit. For apart from him, I can do nothing. (John 15:1-11)
The way in which I am most thankful for God's intervention in my life last summer is that He has given me an insatiable appetite for the Word. I have always really struggled with reading my Bible regularly. I was never disciplined enough and always gave up after a few days of reading a new study or going through a book of the Bible. But once I encountered the Living God, I discovered how much power is in His Living Word, and now I crave the Scriptures. I used to think that reading the Bible was a pretty demanding obligation. I mean, c'mon - life is busy. It's kind of hard to read the Bible on top of life. But that was such a shallow, immature view of my faith! There is no life apart from the Word! That is the entire purpose of reading the Bible - to understand what life really is.
Nevermind how impossible it would be to fulfill the Great Commission without first having read the divinely inspired words of God so that we could know whose disciples we were making. . .We don't even have to talk about how impossible it is to be the light of the world without first knowing the one Great Light of the World as He has revealed Himself to us in His Word. We cannot know anything about Christ, the ministry of Christ, or the ministry we are called to by Christ without first examining, studying, and meditating on His Word, but more than that, we will never experience love, hope, or life if we do not first know the Word of God, which teaches us how to have all three.
If you have never fallen in love with the Word, perhaps you have never fallen in love with Christ. And if you have never fallen in love with Christ, perhaps you have never read the life-giving scriptures in His Word.
It is not that reading the Bible is imperative to fulfilling our duties as Christ followers, it is that we will never know the Christ that we claim to follow without first absorbing the teachings of His Word.
I love the Lord. So very much. And that love is growing as I seek to know Him more. There is so much on my heart and mind about who God is and what He is doing in my life right now and so I know these thoughts may just seem like a ramble. But if, by the grace of God, these humble ramblings have somehow had an effect on your heart, I pray that you may be moved to pursue God. I pray that you may find yourself falling in love with God more as you fall in love with His Word more. You will never be the same. That I promise you.
Our God is not dead. He is very much alive.
And He treasures YOU.
I pray that you may make Him your treasure as well.
With the deepest love and affection,