Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. II Timothy 2:15 (KJV)
I had a wise pastor who regularly encouraged us to take advantage of the church library. “You can only read so many books in your lifetime,” he said. “So read the best books.” That set me to thinking. If I read a book a week, I will read 52 books in a year. One a month would be 12 in a year. Multiply that by the number of years in a life, and that really isn’t a lot of books.
Yes, I admit that I sometimes read light fiction for a break from intense living, but it’s not my regular reading fare. Why? I want to read the best books, and I have limited time for reading.
What, you may ask, is the best book? My all-time favorite is God’s Book, the Bible. Some of its stories are stranger than fiction; there’s history; biography; futuristic reading; poetry; and so on. Real people go through the same things we do, and when they turn to God, he rescues. But the Bible doesn’t sugar coat the real life stories of its heroes and heroines. It talks about real consequences to sin and real blessings to obedience. And it reassures us that we always have a Friend to help us in all experiences and who celebrates with us all the joys that life can bring.
Do you have a reading plan? You know the old saying, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” There are many Bible reading plans available, and there are so many blessings attached to the reading. Spiritual growth is impossible without an intentional, regular devotion to reading the Word and living out its truths. An added benefit is that the Bible is the only book that guarantees good things following the reading.
Sure, I read other books besides the Bible, but I wouldn’t want to neglect it for any other reading. It’s brought me closer to the One I love most. If you don’t regularly take time to read God’s Word, make time. You’ll be glad you did.
Father, your Word heals, restores, brings lights, directs, encourages, reprimands, strengthens, informs, and the list could go on and on. Thank you for giving us this precious gift. Draw our hearts more and more to you and give us a renewed desire to read and study your Word. In Jesus’ name. AMEN.