I felt the stirring for a while, an unsettled feeling in my soul that said I needed to act, that I needed to change.
I wanted to be in the Bible more, I longed to spend more time with God, I needed a consistent, regular schedule of reading and learning. But it just wasn’t happening. I dreamed of it but didn’t take action. Like wanting to lose twenty pounds but not changing my eating habits or getting off the couch, the idea of growing deeper in my faith was on my mind constantly, but I wasn’t actively doing anything to change it.
Don’t get me wrong, I was reading my Bible maybe once or twice a week. I was also reading books about God and faith and spiritual maturity, but I wasn’t going anywhere. I was stuck. I longed to grow, but didn’t want to make too much effort either.
So when 2015 rolled around, I decided that I needed to change. I wanted to be in my Bible more, reading and studying with intention. I wanted to journal and pray, ask questions, practice quiet time, and start to memorize scripture, I wanted to be in the Word daily, not just when I had a moment or remembered to. I was tired of half-assing my relationship with Jesus so I made some modifications at the beginning of January. (Know what I’ll never tire of? Curse words. Sorry, Mom.)
And I know it sounds silly that I even have to say this, but it has changed my life. I’ve been in God’s word daily for almost sixty days at this point and the things he is doing in me and around me are completely overwhelming.
Before I go any further though, I need to share what I thought was going to happen when I started getting up at 5:30 AM every day before work to read my Bible and do my devotion:
-I thought that after a few days or maybe a week, I would magically awake, maybe even without an alarm, excited to read my Bible and not be tired or grumble about the time.
-I imagined every lesson would speak directly to something that was going on in my life and would present clear-cut answers to things I had been struggling with.
-After spending the first part of my day with God, I would be more pleasant and lovely to every person or animal I met, perhaps leaving pixie dust in my wake as I journeyed through my day blessing others.
Shockingly, none of these things happened. I still stumble out of bed, groggy and frowning at 5:30. My bed is warm and my office where I study is not. Some days I read my devotion and I don’t find anything that applies to me or my life, but I just keep chugging along. I’ve learned that sometimes it’s just enough to learn about who God is through his word than to look for quick answers. Overall, my days are not more magical or sparkly. The same things still annoy me, I still yell at my kids too much, and I still don’t really enjoy my boss.
But I have felt a shift.
So this week, I’m going to share those shifts with you. Because I want to encourage you to be in the Word daily even if you think that sounds impossible. I want you to understand that for me (and probably you) there are no quick fixes, no magical pills, or Hollywood-style endings to being in a deeper relationships with Jesus. It takes time and work and consistency. But when you do it, he will meet you where you are and begin transforming areas you weren’t paying attention to, he’ll start shining up the dirty parts you were ignoring, and he will slowly start molding you more into his image.
I’ve been knocked on my butt these last sixty days. I can’t wait to tell you about it.