Perhaps like the blind beggar longing to see, as I shared last Friday, are you longing for more? More love? More peace? More of an understanding of God’s will and plan for your life? The truth is, only Jesus Christ can fill that deep longing, and that truth can be discovered in God’s Holy Word. Not only is the bible the most widely printed book in the world today, but as a dear pastor and personal friend of mine used to tell me quite often, “The #1 way God speaks to us is through His Word” … not the only way, but the #1 way God speaks to us. We’ve just got to pick it up and read it.
I am reminded of the story of Joshua in the Old Testament, chapter one. Surely as the people of Israel had fled Egypt and had wondered for years in the wilderness, they were longing for more. They were longing for peace, for provision, for hope, and for protection. They were longing to settle down so-to-speak. Joshua would become the people of Israel’s leader following Moses. And one of the first things the Lord reveals to Joshua is to be strong, and very courageous, and to keep the Book of the Law always on his lips, to meditate on it day and night. The Lord says that if Joshua is careful to do everything written in it, then he will be prosperous and successful.
Not only for Joshua and the people of Israel way back when, but for each of us today, the Lord invites us to establish a spiritual discipline of “meditating” on God’s Holy Word, according to this verse, and to do so “day and night.” Meditate on who God is, what God has done, what God is doing, and what God will continue to do in your life. Meditate on the love of Christ as revealed in the scriptures. Contemplate and remember the promises of God. What might God be saying to you? How might God be revealing himself to you through the Word?
As you read and as you meditate and contemplate the Lord, listen for how God might be speaking to you. And trust and believe that His Word is indeed “living and active” as it says in Hebrews 4:12. For the one who meditates on His Word day and night is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither—for whatever they do prospers it says in Psalm 1. For when we meditate on God’s Word, when our delight is in His Word, we are blessed. We’ve just got to consider reading it and meditating on it regularly, “day and night” as it says in Joshua 1:8.
When we meditate on God’s Word, we’re able to trust that the Lord is good and His love endures forever as it says numerous times all throughout scripture. We’re able to trust that some how all things work together for the good of those who love God, as it says in Romans 8:28. With God’s Word in our hearts, we’re able to trust in the Lord with all our heart, and lean not on our own understanding, but acknowledge Him in all our ways, and trust that the Lord will direct our path, as it says in Proverbs 3:5-6. With God’s Word in our hearts, we’re able to withstand the powers of the world, and be transformed by the renewing of our minds, so that we might know God’s good, pleasing, and perfect will, as it says in Romans 12:1-2. Our minds are transformed when we fill our minds with God’s Holy Word.
And so, if you are longing for more, to whom or what do you turn? Be encouraged to turn to Jesus through His Word for that longing. Consider spending your waking moments in God’s Word as God longs to be in relationship with you, personally. Be still and know that God is indeed God, and through His Word and by the power of the Holy Spirit, He will transform your life and satisfy your greatest longings and desires.
Rev. Mark Muckler is minister at Central United Methodist Church in Mount Airy.