Thursday, September 23, 2010

Excuses, Excuses

"The word of the LORD came to me:"  Ezekiel 21:18

When we learned in April that we were moving to this house, I spent some time in my Bible looking up every verse in the Bible with the address of 21:18- our new house number.  I've heard of plenty of other people who look up their house address as a Bible reference and come up with some radical verse that really makes them think.   So I looked up verse after verse, and found nothing that I thought could give a meaning to where we live.  Except for this verse.

"The word of the LORD came to me:"  Ezekiel 21:18

It was the only verse that even had a hint of something to it.  I memorized it instantly, and every once in a while I roll it through my head in a deeper kind of God voice. 

And yet, when we did move, we were caught up in the flurry of moving activity.  Oh, we were so busy those first few weeks.  It was still during the school year, and I didn't want to take too much time off from school, because that would take us later into summer- a big no-no for me.   So unpacking, getting settled, getting familiar with our new neighborhood, doing school, and wouldn't you know, my Bible reading lost priority status.   And continued in that matter for many months.

I can't tell you how many days I would see my Bible sitting there, literally calling out to me, and I would walk buy, with the excuse that I had much to do.  The truth is that I do have much to do- every single day.  It takes every ounce of energy that I have to make it to the end of my days lately, but about two months ago or so, I really realized that my habit of reading the Bible daily had completely slipped.  And yet, there was this verse that kept calling to me.

"The word of the LORD came to me:"  Ezekiel 21:18

Then we had several messages given at church no less, about the very thing I was experiencing, that if I wanted to hear God's voice, I needed to be in my Word daily.  They were convicting messages, but boy, it sure would be nice if God had made our days just one hour longer.  I always had an excuse of course.  Every day I could give you a half dozen reasons why I didn't sit down with my Bible that day.   And you know, I don't even know what the breaking point was about a month ago, but it was about a month ago that something cracked.

I was thinking about that verse again, and it was just a light bulb moment.  If I wanted the word of the Lord to come to me, I needed to know His voice.  And if I wanted to know His voice, the only way to do that was to spend time daily in my Bible.  I convicted myself.  Because as I thought on how I just wasn't getting in that daily Bible reading time, I thought about that day when I get to heaven and stand in judgement. And God asks why I didn't read my Bible daily... what would my answer be?  Sorry, I had dishes to do, laundry to do, spiderwebs to wipe down, school to teach, field trips to go on, dance classes to get my kids to... the list goes on.  And it all falls short.  Especially when God pulls out a log sheet and says, "Huh, I see that you managed to read 1473 novels over a ten year period of time.  Yet you couldn't pick up MY book for just a few minutes?"

And that's what did it.  See, since moving here, we've been delighting in our newer, much bigger library.  Chock full of books that I'd like to read.  I've fasted reading for enjoyment before, and I really didn't want to do it again, but I knew that if that was what it would take, I would have to do that again.  So instead, I've purposed in my heart to get back into the daily habit.  In fact, I gave myself an unattainable goal to see exactly how much of the Bible one could read in one month's time.  Turns out, not as much as I was shooting for because life does happen, and there are also passages in the Bible that one needs to read a few times to rally let sink in. 

The number one most important thing a Christian can do every single day of their lives is read their Bible.  There is something extremely important about the physical act of reading one's Bible.  Even listening to it on audio, which I know a lot of people do, is not the same at all as sitting down with the physical Bible and reading it with your eyes.  Your brain processes what you read differently than what you hear. 

All I had were excuses for not reading.  And bad ones at that.  What are your excuses?  I pray that you are able to rid yourself of them and join me in purposing to get into God's Word daily.  He has so much to say to you, but if you're not learning His voice, how will you know that He is talking to you?  Ditch the excuses, and let's dig in.  And who knows, it could be you who gets the revelation of Ezekiel 21:18.

"The word of the LORD came to me:"

No comments: