Crosswalk.com aims to offer the most compelling biblically-based content to Christians on their walk with Jesus. Crosswalk.com is your online destination for all areas of Christian Living – faith, family, fun, and community. Each category is further divided into areas important to you and your Christian faith including Bible study, daily devotions, marriage, parenting, movie reviews, music, news, and more.

Intersection of Life and Faith

<< Crosswalk: The Devotional

Crosswalk the Devotional - April 23, 2010

  • 2010 Apr 23
  • COMMENTS

April 23, 2010

First, Read the Instructions 
by Laura MacCorkle, Crosswalk.com Senior Editor

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.

Romans 15:4 

 

Okay, be honest.  Do you read the instructions or do you just crumble them up, toss them to the side and try to figure something out on your own?

In my case, it depends.  I always, always read the accompanying instructions for hair color, medicine or any type of electronic device that I am trying to set up in my home.

But for other things?  Not so much.  Why not?  Perhaps I place more value or importance on hair color, medicine and electronics or I just realize the gravity of what could happen should I not first read the instructions. 

Sadly, I wish I was as vigilant with life instructions as I was with those on a box of hair color.  You know, the ones found in God's Word.  Instead, whenever I am trying to figure out something in my day-to-day doings, I tend to go to friends or family first. 

Now this isn't all bad, as they're all people of faith and the ones who really know me best and those with whom I have the tightest relationships.  We have laughed together.  We have cried together.  We have studied the Word together.  And I know they will not pour salt into my wounds nor pepper me with trite platitudes.

These bonds didn't form overnight either.  No, they were forged through a great deal of time spent together, through years of fellowship, through times of heartache and of joy.  These are the people who speak Truth (in love!) into my life.  The ones who hold me accountable.  The ones who ask me questions and have chipped away at the walls in order to get to know me better and help me see myself as I truly am.

But … they are still not the ones I should be checking with first.  In Romans 15:4, Paul was reminding the Roman church (and us today!) that what has been recorded in Scripture (at that time, just the Old Testament … but for us today, all of Scripture) is specifically written on purpose for us and for our benefit.  Parables, principles, promises, prophecies … you name it.  It's all in there for the children of God to take in and apply to our lives.

So when we read the instructions (first) found in God's Word, we know that it is here to …

  • Teach us … If we seek him, we will know him.  If we have eyes to see and as the Holy Spirit works in us, we will find what God is trying to tell us in the pages of his Word.  Then, we can apply his guidelines for interacting, for worshipping, for serving, for everything that is needed in our lives as we purpose to live for him.
  • Give endurance … When you are weary, when you are ready to give up and are just about done trying to live out your faith, when you are ready to quit whatever it is God is asking you to do, when you have no idea how much longer you can undergo a trial or tribulation, be strengthened by his unfailing, unchanging Word.
  • Provide encouragement … How easy is it to feel blah about life?  To wonder what your purpose is?  To feel like you don't matter? As a prolific friend said recently, our life on earth is not meant to be a "vacation" but a "mission."  God can give us the inspiration, through his Word, to buoy our hearts and keep the fire burning within.
  • Offer hope … "Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow, great is thy faithfulness Lord unto me."  What wonderful words from the classic hymn, "Great Is Thy Faithfulness."  Because God sent his son to die in our place, because he has promised to never leave us nor forsake us, because he is preparing a place for those who trust in him (heaven), because of our identity in him as sons and daughters and members of a royal priesthood, we do have bright hope for tomorrow.


Intersecting Faith & Life: 
If it's been a while since you've read your Bible, let me challenge you to take the "Proverbs 31-Day Challenge" starting today.  It's really simple.  There are only 31 chapters in the book of Proverbs.  So take a month and read one chapter a day.  Chew thoroughly on each one.  Think about how you can apply the principles to your life.  And then see, after one month's time, if you haven't been taught, given endurance and encouraged.  You only have hope to gain and nothing to lose!

Further Reading:

Thy Word
Music & Lyrics:  Amy Grant & Michael W. Smith

 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet
And a light unto my path.
Thy word is a lamp unto my feet
And a light unto my path.

When I feel afraid,
And think I've lost my way.
Still, You're there right beside me.
Nothing will I fear
As long as You are near;
Please be near me to the end.

Thy word is a lamp unto my feet
And a light unto my path.
Thy word is a lamp unto my feet
And a light unto my path.

I will not forget
Your love for me and yet,
My heart forever is wandering.
Jesus by my guide,
And hold me to Your side,
And I will love you to the end.

Nothing will I fear
As long as You are near;
Please be near me to the end.
Thy word is a lamp unto my feet
And a light unto my path.

Thy word is a lamp unto my feet
And a light unto my path.
And a light unto my path.
You're the light unto my path.

 

Archives

Follow Crosswalk.com