Strive for “more” this year…

We are 3 days into the new year now. I decided to do my own personal devotions in my German Bible this year. I believe this will make me concentrate more on what I am reading as well as improve my very rusty German! Regardless of the Bible version, I hope you are getting back into your routine, and that that routine includes committed time daily in God’s Word. It doesn’t have to be a commitment to reading through the Bible in a year, God has never required that of us. But He does command us to read and know His Word. Joshua 1:8 tells us to “meditate on it day and night”. The Psalms speak of the man who “delights in the law of the Lord.” Paul tells us in Timothy that God’s Word is “profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction and for training in righteousness.” One thing is for sure, if we are not reading God’s Word daily, there will be no spiritual growth or strengthening of faith.

Along this vein of reading, I want to encourage you in your reading. You have grown up in a Christian family. You have heard the Bible preached, you have read it, you have heard dad and I talk about it. It may seem very familiar to you-but here is the thing: There is always something more that God wants to teach you about Him through His Word no matter how often you have read it, how many times you have heard the one “story” or how familiar the verse. The Bible is living, and combined with God’s spirit in you-there will always be something more for you to learn. For instance, in the course of my own devotions, I have read and studied the verse above many times-but today, God reminded me of something. He reminded me that it is His spirit that abides in me. Some versions translate this to mean “my spirit will not struggle with humans forever”, others put it as “my spirit will not remain in human beings forever”. My limited understanding of the German version roughly says something like “.. I will let my life-spirit remain in men for only a limited time.” It was the word “life-spirit” (“Lebensgeist”) that caught my eye. His spirit gives us life. The two are inseparably tied together-our earthly life and God. The God of the universe determines exactly how long we live, down to the nano-second. He determines and gives us life from our first breath to our last. I have read this verse countless times, but since his Word is living, He continues to teach me more through it. Get into His word today, and I am sure you will find this to be the case for you as well!

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