Thoughts from the Staff: Devotional
“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates" - Deuteronomy 6:4-9
God wrote a book. For us.
Do you realize that this is a miracle?
For most of us in the modern age, the Bible is completely available to carry in our pockets and access at a moment's notice. The earliest believers were not so lucky.
They heard God's Word spoken verbally from their teachers, family leaders, and those in possession of the scrolls passed down from generation to generation. But, there was no easy-to-find, leather-bound booklet, nor was there a "Bible App" on a miniature computer in their pockets.
Now, everything is different. God's Word, this Bible that He wrote like a love letter to us through the Holy Spirit, is accessible here and now, all of the time. What a remarkable blessing! But, let's get down to the true blessing of this--God loved (and loves) us enough to share with us everything we need to know about Him. Everything we need to know about His Son, Jesus. Everything we need in order to be saved, and everything we need in order to live a godly life in obedience to Him. It's ours for the taking!
So, Christian, are you taking it? Are you daily drinking of this deep fountain of wisdom and life? Is His Word saturating your mind and body to the depths of your soul with all measures of grace, flowing from the very heart of God?
Maybe your daily devotional habits have suffered in recent weeks. Perhaps you are going through a "dry spell" in your walk with Jesus Christ. Be it tiredness, tribulations, or just the mere toil of being disciplined--the motivation to open that Book just isn't there.
Why? Friends, this is a good question to ask yourselves. Why?
God wrote a book for us, that we may read it and pray through it and savor it in order to grow closer to Him. This is a gift of incredible love, stirring our affections for Jesus. These words are full of absolute Truth. They are the written Light, spoken into our world and into our hearts to eradicate the darkness.
This Bible is a deep ocean of healing knowledge. What's the best way to enter an ocean? Dive head first. I challenge you to open God's Word today. For a little bit of inspiration, check out the beautiful video at the top of the page created by Desiring God ministries (linked from Youtube). If you are anything like me, you might find structural practice to be extremely helpful, so here is a Bible-study tool called "S.O.A.P.S." to help you get started (or re-started).
S.O.A.P.S. Bible-Study Method
S - Scripture: After reading through the passage for the day, write down which verse(s) stuck out to you the most.
O - Observation: Write down, what struck you about this passage? Why did it strike you? What does it teach you about God and about yourself?
A - Application: Write down, what is one thing you can take from this passage and apply to your life? Perhaps this is a change in mental attitude, a sin that needs to be repented of, or a step of obedience the Lord is calling you to take.
P - Prayer: Write our a prayer to our Heavenly Father regarding this passage, that the Holy Spirit would work in you and through you as you commit to living out this passage.
S - Share: Write down the name of one person, believer or nonbeliever alike, that you could share what you have learned from this passage with and commit to following through.
-written by Chase Cotten, Media Director at IDES