I first started trying to read my bible on a daily basis when I was in high school. A few people I knew and looked up to as spiritual advisors seemed to think it was a good idea. I had not seen it modeled at home, but it made sense to me. From that time on, making Bible reading, Prayer, and my relationship with God a priority has been an up and down experience. Why is it that “God First” makes so much sense when we hear ourselves say it, but is so difficult when we try to live it?
I believe the answer is very simple. It is the clear strategy of Satan to keep us so busy, to keep us so focused on our earthly obligations, that we don’t take the time to live our lives as the spiritual people we have been created to be. We are simply fighting the battle for our minds, for our priorities, and for the truth.
The WORD of God IS that Belt of Truth that we spoke of last week. The Sword of the Spirit is the “revealed word” we need in a moment of battle, or in a moment of difficulty. Our righteousness, peace, faith, salvation, and prophetic words of the Spirit are all based on the written, revealed TRUTH of God found in His WORD. To be clear, one can read the Bible and miss knowing Jesus. Jesus said, “You diligently study the Scriptures because you think that by them you possess eternal life. These are the Scriptures that testify about me,” (John 5:39) Our ultimate hope and foundation for life are found in Jesus! And Jesus is found most completely when we immerse ourselves in God’s story, His revealed and written story, His truth, the Bible.
Maintaining and Stirring the Hunger
As I have watched the responses over the past several weeks of worship together, I am convinced that there is a genuine hunger for God in the church. I see it in the parents, but perhaps even more so in our kids! I believe these are moments we need to be careful not to miss, so I leave you with a few keys for feeding the hunger you are seeing in your own life and in your children.
- Lead your children to God by being a model. Make Bible reading and prayer, your relationship with God, a clear priority in your own life.
- Talk about your daily bible reading as if it is as normal as eating breakfast. “Today, I was reading in … and I noticed …”
- Ask your kids what they are reading? What are they noticing? It is the things that stuck out from the daily reading that are usually becoming the “rhema” or deeply revealed (“Aha” truth) for their own hearts and minds.
- Pray together as a family.
- Read the bible together as a family. (Our family is currently reading “The Story” each evening as we prepare for the advent season.)
It is the simple things that can make this habit of knowing and walking with God a reality for you and for your entire family. God bless you as you engage with Him in this advent season, and as you feed the hunger and enable it to grow through your own practical and intentional decision.Pastor Kevin Strite