We're blessed to have a pastor who, though only 33 years old, preaches very well and bravely exhorts as well. He's quick to remind us that if we can't find our Bibles on Sunday morning in the rush to get ready for church, perhaps it's because we haven't opened them since the previous Sunday?
Our Heavenly Father has so much for us. He's wanting always to give us good gifts, and guess where the bulk of those gifts are kept?
That's right...in our Bibles. God beckons us to come to Him and receive. Come and be filled to overflowing.
God's plan is for our stay here on Earth to be rich in meaning, love, joy, and peace, despite the human condition.
But Satan has a plan too. There's much in the world that makes our stay here rotten, like the stench of sin. The allure, and then the stench, is everywhere. We can't protect ourselves or our children enough.
The speech teacher three of my children go to has a speech game on her iPad. Twice monthly we go to speech and yet I hadn't heard anything about this iPad. I didn't realize my girls knew of the existence of the iPad, since no commericals come into our home. There's a lot we spare them by not having a TV signal, and by not using the Internet as TV. I don't even realize all that we're missing, but I'm grateful.
But suddenly, this week, my mostly-unmaterialistic girls are asking for an iPad and I'm grieving at their coveting.
We teach purchasing on a needs-basis only, with few exceptions per year (such as pre-used, purposeful items). Our Compassion children's faces on our kitchen cupboards remind us of where our money is better spent. There's a sinful discrepancy in the way the first world lives compared to the third world, and I don't want to be a part of that discrepancy, except to try to correct it.
Well girls, I said, an iPad might be necessary for competing in the business world, but we're not in that world so we won't be getting one; we have a computer already. Think of the significant, life-changing benefits our Compassion children would enjoy with the same $400 - $700. And you? You would just have a second computer....one that would entice you to spend more and more.
But even before the words left my mouth, I knew my lecturing was worthless next to the Power of God; only God changes hearts. I'm an imperfect parent and as such, I have no power by myself. My only power comes from God...the oral reading (for my girls especially) and teaching of the Word of God, and my prayers.
Maybe in your house it isn't an iPad and materialism this week, but a teen who wants to date and touch. You can try hard to keep your teen separated from her beloved beau, but ultimately, the Word of God and your prayers are the real power.
As parents and as Christians, we can't afford to leave the Bible on the end-table or bedside, unopened, all week. Doing so is trading God's peace for Satan's stench. It doesn't take long for a Christian worldview to water down, inviting sin into our lives.
Dear Friends, none of us is immune. We desperately need the Word of God, everyday. If there's a newborn in the house or littles and we can't manage everyday, then can we listen to the Word of God, with just an Internet connection? We can do it! We just have to understand the impact and thirst for more of God.
Prayer Time: Dear Heavenly Father, we love you. We thank you for the wondrous gifts you offer in your Word. May we receive those gifts unto ourselves and thirst for more. Make us thirst for your peace and your righteousness, not Solomon's empty experiences. The world empties us, but you fill us. Oh, Lord, may we be filled to overflowing and bring glory to You.
In Jesus' Name I pray, Amen.
Here are some scriptures that teach the value and the gift of God's Word:
Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.
For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.
For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
Psalm 119:18 Open my eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of your law.
1 Peter 2:2
Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up into salvation—
2 Timothy 3:16-17
All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.
But he answered, “It is written, “‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”
With my whole heart I seek you; let me not wander from your commandments! I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.