My theme verse for this week is from 2 Peter 1:3: "His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness."
There are so many rich insights to glean from this verse, but what I pondered this week was: how do I tap into that divine power? How can I be equipped for all of life's trials, struggles and frustrations and still respond in a loving, patient and godly way?
Well, the answer is there: "through our knowledge of Him."
But how do we know God? Well, I can think of several ways: through prayer, through worshipping in songs and hymns, through listening to a pastor teach from God's word, through listening to the wise counsel of godly friends. But above all, the main way we get to know God, the way that Jesus, the disciples, and the prophets remind us how He speaks directly to us, is through His word. The Holy Scriptures. The Bible. It's right there for us, available in almost every language today (thanks to Wycliffe Bible Translators and other awesome ministries!).
Sadly, how often do we NOT tap into this readily available resource? For me, honestly, it's a lot more often than I would like to admit. Since becoming a mom, it's been especially hard. Sleepless nights, loads of laundry and piles of toys to clean up all come before spending time in God's word. It's so hard to even focus sometimes. And I can tell, almost immediately, when I haven't been spending time in God's word. It's not that He punishes me or looks down on me. No, nothing like that. It's just that I am missing out. I feel powerless, helpless, and weak. I stop praying. I start depending on myself. I get cranky and defensive and argumentative and irritable. I turn to things like TV or magazines for comfort. But nothing really refreshes my soul. Finally, I usually come to a point where I realize what I've been doing. And that's when I confess it. That's what I had to do a few weeks ago, after 9 months (maybe more) of rarely opening God's word. I confessed my lack of desire to read the Bible and began to ask God to give me a renewed hunger and eagerness to spend time with Him and be in the word.
Well, He answered, almost immediately. God prompted me, through the encouragement of a few friends, to get involved in a women's Bible study that meets weekly. The study provides a curriculum with daily lessons to guide my time in God's word. The questions are simple, nothing mind-blowing. But what it has challenged me to do is get back into the habit of opening God's word DAILY. Even if it's just for 15 or 30 minutes. It is SO worth it.
And what has happened as a result? I have tapped into that "divine power that has given us everything we need for life and godliness." I can truly say, I immediately noticed a difference. I began to pray again, numerous times a day. In the car, while giving Marshall a bottle, on a walk, on the phone, in the middle of a difficult conversation, etc. I stopped depending on myself and turned to God for strength. I became more attune to my own sinful heart attitudes: pride, selfishness, anger, irritability, unwillingness to submit to my husband, jealousy, etc. But mostly, my soul has been refreshed. I feel satisfied, full of joy, content even in the midst of a stressful day when all Marshall wants to do is whine. Why? Because I've tapped into that divine power that equips me for EVERYTHING I need. It can't come from me. It has to come from above.
So I have to ask...have you tapped into that divine power? If not, you're missing out. As easy as it is to de-prioritize sitting down and opening God's word, even if it's just 15 minutes...I encourage you NOT to let it be set aside for another day. Because when we do tap into that divine power, when we taste the honey from His Scriptures and see that the Lord is good, there is nothing more satisfying.