Bible reading can be akin to a roller coaster ride - at times it feels like you are soaring on the heights of understanding and revelation, all you read is rich with meaning, you see things clearly for miles...and then with one quick turn...plummeting down, vision obscured, words seemingly meaningless, just black ink on white paper.
After a number of years of this, I've accepted this reality in the spiritual discipline of Bible reading, meditation, and communion. I hope for more ups than downs. I pray the seasons of soaring last far longer than times of descent.
By God's grace, I am in one of those seasons of the upswing. I am eager for every chance I get to be in the Word. I love morning communion time. Every page seems to be exploding with new meaning. So much of it sticking with me throughout the day. I wish I had more time for study!
But maybe you are in one of those times of descent. The main thing you'd like right now may be for me to shut up about how great my times of Bible reading have been.
I feel you.
But before you close the browser,
may I gently suggest something? I'm not promising it will be some magical cure-all, but could I just ask you to read something, spoken by God, about what God has spoken? It is something I read the other morning, and it might get the heart pumping. I know for me that sometimes I just need to be reminded of how good the Bible is. How valuable. How powerful. How life-giving and sweet. It encourages me to take heart. Keeps me from giving up. Gets me coming back, pleading with God to open my eyes that I might see wonderful things.
Asking, simply, "Father, revive me again."
So here goes. From King David.
And as you read, I pray that your little cart will start its way back up to the heights.
7 The law of the Lord is perfect,
reviving the soul;
the testimony of the Lord is sure,
making wise the simple;
8 the precepts of the Lord are right,
rejoicing the heart;
the commandment of the Lord is pure,
enlightening the eyes;
9 the fear of the Lord is clean,
the rules of the Lord are true,
and righteous altogether.
10 More to be desired are they than gold,
even much fine gold;
sweeter also than honey
and drippings of the honeycomb.
11 Moreover, by them is your servant warned;
in keeping them there is great reward.
(Psalm 19:7-11, ESV)
OK. How are we?
Maybe the cart is heading back up. Yes? Praise God! Keep reading, and I pray that the Bible will continue to come alive to you.
But maybe those words are still just black ink on white paper. Or worse...now you feel lower than you did before because you were hoping there would be a change. Dear friend, I am sorry. But may I say something more? Don't give up. Don't lose heart. Keep praying. Keep asking him to open the Bible to you and make it alive. In the words of our loving Savior and King, "do not lose heart (Luke 18:1ff)."
Better yet, don't just take it from me, here at a website. Call a Christian friend and ask them to come over and read the Word with you. To read the Word to you. The fellowship of the saints is a powerful thing, and may be just what you need to ignite the fire and revive you again. I'm praying it would happen for you, dear reader.
The LORD bless you and keep you;
the LORD make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you;
the LORD lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace.
(Numbers 6:24-26, ESV)