From The Sacred Echo by Margaret Feinberg, page 73, 84
I'm increasingly discovering that whenever God speaks to us it's pause-worthy. It's not just worth taking note, but worth pausing to stop, think, reflect, meditate, and ask questions. God speaking is a hint that something deeper is going on. So when God speaks something to my heart, often through Scripture, I will take time to prayerfully ask him, What does this mean? Where are you going with this? I'll ask the Holy Spirit to connect the dots in my life...
More than anything, I hunger to live a God-infused life. Apart from Scripture, it's impossible to live that life to the fullest. So I cry out to God, Open my eyes to see and ears to hear. What do you want to say to me?...
Throughout Scripture God is constantly revealing facets of himself, luminous discoveries of his love, goodness, and faithfulness. Like crown jewels, they are to be treasured. No matter how clear the initial spiritual impulse may be, I'm learning the importance of pressing God for more. I want all he has to give. I want his full work completed in me. I know that I see things dimly. I need the illumination.
So whenever I hear the echo,
Read it again,
I want to respond, knowing that it's pause-worth, and discover what our incredibly personal God wants to reveal.
I've come to realize, Lord, that I have been reading my Bible like a project on my To-Do list. I tackle a book in the Bible, or a topic-generated chain of passages like one of my projects, checking it off my list, and moving on to the next chapter or topic. I'm learning to read slower, to hover over passages, verses, words, to be still and mentally linger on phrases that pop off the page at me.
I'm learning that reading Your Word isn't a marathon event or a task on my daily list.
I'm learning that it's OK--actually it's way more than OK--to take your word slow and easy. To hang around one set of verses for days, weeks, or months. To ask You again and again, "What is Your message for me in these words?"
I'm learning that, when words seem to jump off the page and slap me in the face, those words really are over-night, signature-confirmation-required, priority-mail from You to me. I need to "read them again" as Feinberg says. Read them again and again and again listening to Your message for me.
Control my eyes, Lord, as they scan the pages of Your Word. Stop them where You will. Control my mind, Lord, as it interprets the signals from my eyes. Make it freeze-frame Your words for me this day.
Whisper Your message that is buried in the depths of those words for each moment, for each event in my life. Sing it into the chambers of my heart. Have Your words gently bounce off the walls within and echo through my thoughts, my attitudes, my being.
Again and again and again, Lord.
My Word truly is alive, Little One.
It is sharp when the truth needs to be sliced and slivered from the false.
It is soothing when your heart needs comfort.
It is poignant when your attitudes need correcting.
It is searing when your thoughts need purification.
It is revealing when your eyes search for the truth.
It is hilarious when your heart needs joy.
It is an anchor when your life seems adrift.
Take it slow. Don't rush. There's no deadline for finishing The Book.
It will be with you for all eternity.