Tuesday, August 6, 2013
an update of sorts
at 5:18 AM
If you read this post you know that I am slowly teaching myself (or, rather letting God teach me) to not be afraid of the Bible. I'm trying to come to terms with it, you could say. Figuring out how I'm going to approach it as an adult, not just as a fuzzy-feeling grabbing consumer living off of quick bits from devotion books, only ever knowing the interpretations of others.
As I mentioned earlier, I'm reading through Eat This Book by Eugene Peterson, sort of as a guide to opening my eyes to new ways of reading Scripture. And though it's not a fun, quick read, it's giving me some foundational truths to take with me as I pull out my Bible every morning. It's teaching me to approach the Word in its entirety first as a story, to ask how and where I fit into God's great story instead of the other way around. Which, up until recently, was how I always read the Bible: as a self-help book rather than God's love story to us.
What we must never be encouraged to do, although all of us are guilty of it over and over, is to force Scripture to fit our experience. Our exprience is too small; it's like trying to put the ocean into a thimble. What we want is to fit into the world revealed by Scripture, to swim in this vast ocean.
(Hope that was a relevant quote and not an awkward break in the post. Gosh it's a good thing I'll never have to write a term paper again. I remember nothing.)
I'm sure most of you have heard of the She Reads Truth Bible reading plan. I had read a few series before (or a few days of a series, if you want to know the truth), but it never stuck. But when I saw that this summer's plan was on women of the Bible, I decided to give it another shot. And it is so, so good. What I love about She Reads Truth is that they are not about giving you a cute, quick verse coupled with a flowery devotional intended to make you better, sweeter, more Southern, etc. It is totally Gospel-centered, totally revolving around the story of the Bible.
For the first time in years, I am excited to read the Bible. I look up to the ceiling and shrug, like here I am God. See, I'm trying here. And sometimes He responds in these sweet, subtle ways that help me make it through the week. I beg to fall in love with His word every time I open it, and by george, I do. There's good stuff in there. I am scribbling in my Bible like a mad woman, and it feels good.
Of course, it's not always like this. Some mornings before work I can barely keep my eyes open and eventually give up to go scramble some eggs instead (and then get irritated to the point of almost cussing out loud when I can't get that last darn eggshell out of the bowl. And usually by then it's all over.)
But, overall, I am continuing to read with my love-tinted glasses and that is truly making the difference.
Also? Thank you all so much for your kind comments, prayers, links to sermons, etc. It means so much to me. As I'm still getting used to a new church and finding ways to get connected, I'm so thankful for my online community. You're the best.