Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Why You Feel So Thirsty and Empty

Once you believe in Christ as Lord and Savior, reading your Bible every day is the gateway to satisfaction in God. I am not saying that missing a day here or there means you won't find joy. What I am saying is that if you only read your Bible once a week, or only when someone preaches to you, you're missing out on what keeps faith and joy alive. It's like trying to keep a plant alive without watering it.

I am convinced of this because that is exactly what my experience has been. More importantly, though, this is exactly what Jesus said about how much we need our Bibles. He told us that God's words are the food by which we will live: "Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God." (Matthew 4:4 (Jesus was quoting Deuteronomy 8:3); see also Luke 4:4). What He was saying is that we need God's Word the way we need food – to survive! And we need it as often as we need food – daily. He was teaching that God's Word will nourish, refresh, and sustain us just the way food does.

He also taught us that if we want eternal life, we must abide in Him, and that if we want Him to hear our prayers His words must abide in us. (John 15:1-11). That means they have to remain in us, and in order for that to happen we have to keep them close and keep them in our minds. "So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ." (Romans 10:17). In fact, it's so crucial to the Christian life that Jesus Himself is referred to as "the Word". (John 1:1).

This is a message God gives us again and again in the Bible. I wasted nearly ten years of my Christian life feeling empty and discouraged because I didn't listen to it. But I know now from experience that God simply means what He says: "Blessed is the man… [whose] delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither." (Psalm 1:1a; 2-3).

If you're feeling withered, God has given you the answer.

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