When I was a little girl…
my mom signed me up for this girls club she heard about from a friend. At the time she believed it was sort of like a Girl Scout troop or something held at a local church.
I remember it was called, BUSY BEES and everything was bright yellow and brown. At the beginning they gave me my own little yellow guide book and each week we had snacks and played games. It might seem like sort of a silly story to tell, but to me the most amazing part is that I can still bring to mind one very specific thing they insisted we memorize.
It goes something like this…
Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path.
Back then, my family didn’t attend church. I don’t even know if we owned a Bible. We certainly didn’t talk about God at our house. And it was several years later before a neighbor invited us to a church where we heard the saving truth about Jesus’ death and resurrection.
And still, God decided to plant that word in my heart as a very young girl. I had no idea then what it meant. I had no idea how that seed would stay nestled in my soul waiting for the days to be watered, fertilized and nurtured.
That was my beginning.
Not my beginning as a human, but my beginning as a Warrior in Christ… as one who gets to stand firm in the fight and see victories over the battles of life.
But I haven’t always stood so confident. I haven’t always chased after the things of God. There were many years, even as a Christian, when I didn’t understand the Bible; when I wasn’t interested in it, and didn’t find it appealing at all to read. So what changed for me? How did I go from dazed and confused to becoming a of student of God’s word, and a Warrior for His kingdom?
I actually met someone who oozed God. She talked about the Bible like the people in it were her best friends. She seemed to know the ins and outs of it like she lived in it’s pages. When she talked about the Bible, it didn’t seem boring, but it was more like she truly loved it and was thrilled by it.
I remember praying…
that God would give me what she had. I remember asking God to help me want to… want to be like her. Because even stubborn parts of me were jealous of her and making me not like her, even though I really did like her. (If that makes any sense at all)
I bought a Chronological Bible like she had. It’s the same 66 books, but organized according to a timeline of historical data. I began reading it each day and I didn’t get lost.
And God started stirring in me a new beginning.
Was it always easy? No. But I stuck with it.
Were some days harder than others? Yes… reading through the laws in Leviticus can be tough. But when you look for just one little nugget of truth each day, it makes it easier. You just press on and trust God each day for some truth.
This is now my fourth year reading through and today I began the New Testament. So I felt led to share with you today’s truth from John, the beloved disciple, as he is known. He begins his account of Jesus’ life this way.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. All things were created through Him, and apart from Him not one thing was created that has been created. Life was in Him, and that life was the light of men. That light shines in the darkness, yet the darkness did not overcome it.
John 1:1-5 NLT
Not only do I love that John brings to light this name of Jesus… the Word, but I love that he tells us that Jesus was there in the beginning.
It really got me thinking…
If it was good enough for Jesus… it should be good enough for me! Why don’t I follow His lead more often? Why don’t I realize He knows best? I mean, if it’s good enough for God, then shouldn’t it be good enough for me?
If God went to all that trouble to make certain His Word was at the beginning of time, then how hard could it really be for me to just put it at the beginning of my day?
And for that matter, why shouldn’t I also put it….
at the beginning of my thoughts
at the beginning of my relationships
at the beginning of my plans
at the beginning of my family
at the beginning of my friends
at the beginning of my work
at the beginning of my education
at the beginning of my finances
at the beginning of my emotions
at the beginning of my EVERYTHING!
So how do we go about this?
I mean, God is, well… God. So it’s probably easy for Him, right? He can just prioritize and put the right things first, no problem. But for us, it takes some practice.
So what would this LOOK like?
Let’s begin with PRAYER
Never hesitate to begin something new with prayer. And excellent verse to pray is…
Open my eyes to spiritual truth so that I may behold wonderful things from Your law.
Psalm 119:18 AMP
Since God inspired the words of the Bible to be written, and they are powerful truth through which we can live our lives, why not use them… given back to Him as requests for His help? Why not plead to Him on our own behalf with the very Word He has already given us?
Then just pick up your Bible and BEGIN. We all have to start somewhere. There is no perfect plan. It’s sort of like jumping into a pool. You know it’s going to be cold and you’re going to get wet. So, get it over with and jump in!
So what does that LOOK like?
Here are three options that increase in the level of challenge.
1) Read One, Write One
Take one verse each day. Begin with the Psalms, or the book of John. Write one verse on an index card and take it with you through your day. Maybe set an alarm on your phone to stop and read it aloud to yourself and reflect on it each hour.
2) Write and Define
If you want to go deeper, after you’ve written the verse, take some time to think on the words in the verse. Look them up in the dictionary; define them and consider why God might have chosen one word over another. Maybe even look up the words in the original Greek or Hebrew (if you’re wanting to know more on how to do this, see links at the bottom of this post)
3) Challenge Option
Consider choosing a chronological Bible reading plan. I started one 4 years ago and as I have continued with it each year, I have seen how it has changed my life. I used to struggle with feeling overwhelmed by the Bible. I always wanted to know more, but I didn’t have a plan. I’d join a Bible study and just read what someone told me to, then answer the pre-set questions. And that’s fine for a while. But I was not able to dig into the Bible for myself. And whenever I tried, I simply never knew where to start. So I just wouldn’t.
But once I began reading the Chronological Bible, my outlook completely changed. I found an ownership in it. It was like I grew up a little. Like when I learned to drive instead of always being taken somewhere by my mom. I finally found true joy and power in God’s word. I found that I was able to navigate and take myself wherever I needed to go in the Bible without always having to ask someone else for directions.
Warrior, let me encourage you to just take the next step that is right for YOU! Each of us is on our own journey and we need to take it one step at a time for it to be meaningful. Challenge yourself. Trust God in it. And even though some will say that anytime is the right time to spend with God, I want to encourage you to put it at the BEGINNING of your day. Why?
Because if that is the way God did it faithfully for us, then it’s most likely the right way… because it’s His good way. And that’s good enough reason for me.
Links to my favorite sites to help you with Greek and Hebrew word research:
If you are looking for more information about the Word of God, this post: Sharpen Your Sword Skills: Duel with the Spoken Word of God, may be a good next read. There’s also, When the Morning Assaults our Mindset: How to WakeUp and Win!
Or consider listening to a few podcast episodes such as Episode 041.Strongholds: Where Do We Hide When it Matters Most? or Episode 025.What is True Worship and How Can I Experience It?