13Here is another reason why we never stop thanking God: When you received God’s word from us, you realized it wasn’t the word of humans. Instead, you accepted it for what it really is—the word of God. This word is at work in you believers. I Thess. 2:13
According to this passage, if you are God's child, His Word is ACTIVE in you right now!
31So Jesus said to those Jews who had believed in Him, If you abide in My word [hold fast to My teachings and live in accordance with them], you are truly My disciples. 32And you will know the Truth, and the Truth will set you free.”John 8:31-32 (Amplified Bible)
There is a big difference between “hanging out” with someone and “abiding” with that person. In a similar way, there is a big difference between “hanging out” with God’s Word (i.e. Sunday morning messages at church, weekly Bible study meetings, etc) and “abiding” in God’s Word. Describe this difference and the difference abiding in God’s Word makes in a person’s life.
“In times past, I have experienced seasons of days and weeks in which I struggled to make God’s Word the priority I knew it needed to be in my life. These seasons felt like trying to swim in a desert. In other words, everything felt dry and anything I attempted to do seemed pointless. I would attend conferences or even hear my own pastors share the Word and I would often feel guilty, embarrassed, ashamed and inadequate about my own lack of knowledge of what the Bible says and even my own level of commitment to read and study it more. I knew something needed to change, but I wasn’t sure how to make the change.”
Have you experienced seasons in your life similar to the one shared above? If so, how do you relate to this honest expression about such a difficult struggle?
I want to give you something to encourage you on your journey to making God’s Word more of a priority in your life. Throughout Scripture we read that God’s Word is like water (see Ephesians 5:26 and Isaiah 55:10-11 for just two examples) which cleanses the one who reads it.
Romans 12:1-3 teaches us to make a priority of the Word in order to have our minds (our thinking and thought patterns) transformed. I don’t know about you, but when I have gotten out of the habit of drinking water, I lose my desire for it. If I’m filling up on sweet tea, coffee, or other sugary drinks, my thirst actually decreases while my taste buds quickly learn to crave these other beverages. These drinks may satisfy my sweet tooth, but they don’t adequately quench my thirst.
But let’s say I make a decision based on knowing that my body needs clean, pure water to operate more optimally, that I’m going to start drinking more plain ol’ healthy water. At first, my taste buds are going to protest as they crave the sweet stuff they’ve gotten used to. It’s going to feel strange and uncomfortable—at first! But in a fairly short amount of time, I’m going to notice a few things:
- I begin to feel thirsty more often and for water;
- Other drinks (especially sugary ones) taste “too” sweet now;
- I need to use the restroom more often! (Water is "active" in us--it helps eliminate toxins and waste= cleansing my body from the inside out)
- I’ll look and feel healthier to the point that many times, others will begin to notice;
- My energy increases, enabling me to accomplish more in less time;
- I want to tell others to start drinking water, too!
I think you get my point, right? As we make God’s Word a priority, what changes will we notice (as it parallels to drinking water)? You might want to jot these down in your journal or Bible. Use these notes to help you stay on track.