Psalm 51:10 "Create in me a clean heart, O God; restore within me a sense of being brand new."
Why do we have to read the Bible? What if we can't remember all the things we read? What if we can't pronounce all the books of the Bible, all of the places, all of the names? Why do we have to take time each day to read it? What difference does it really make?
John and I sometimes do church at home on Sundays with the kids. We take out all the kids instruments, the guitar, the tambourine, the triangle, the maracas (Amelia's personal favorite) and we sing our favorite worship songs and dig into the Word. It isn't long. In fact sometimes it is only 15-30 minutes. And part of that time is asking Micah to sit still and Mia to be quiet, and Julia to put the guitar down, and for Mark to stop spinning on his head...but we are all together for one purpose and that is to worship, pray, and learn more about God.
This particular Sunday (John doesn't know I am writing this--I promise) John out did himself with getting all the kids ready, and he sat them all on a blue yoga mat (and they stayed there!) and he got Micah and Mia peanut butter on a spoon and low and behold we were actually able to read from the Bible and really answer some questions. We were reading in the book of Colossians.
Our verse of focus was on Colossians 3:2 "Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth."
John gave this awesome analogy and he didn't make it up but he heard it somewhere and it stuck with me and the kids and was completely perfect. I started to tear up even. He brought up the point that many people ask, "Why do we have to read the Bible?" There is so much in the book. There is so much information. Why do we have to take the time to read something that is so hard to understand sometimes? And John heard of a man telling a young boy to take a basket and fill it up with water and come back to me. The boy obeyed. He went to a nearby well filled up the basket (which was of course filled with holes) and went back to the man.
But every time he filled the basket with water by the time he brought it back the basket was empty. But the man kept telling him, "Go fill it again." So the boy finally said, "Why do I have to keep filling up the basket if by the time I bring it to you it is empty?" The man said that many times we feel like what we are doing or reading makes no difference, but look at the basket now...how does it look? "Clean," the boy replied. Well, that is why we read the Bible. He cleans our hearts from the inside and that changes us. That is what makes us different. We may not be able to memorize the whole Bible, or remember all the facts, all the places, all the names, but every time we open up God's word we can be sure that He will use it to clean us, and change us and that will make every difference.
Maybe that is a silly analogy to you, but I needed to hear that message. I needed to hear that every time I spend my time reading the Word and meditating on a verse, or praying, or doing what I know is right, it does matter. Because sometimes it can feel like maybe it doesn't matter. It can feel like it's just something else we HAVE to do or something else to check off on a list.
I am thankful for that message of being clean, and I love that God can make all things new.
Happy New Year.