Hi, my name is Tammy and I am a bookaholic. I love a good story. I immerse myself in the loves of my favorite fictional characters. When I convince someone to read one of my treasured books, I feel like I’m introducing them to a friend. I can’t wait until the person finishes the book so I can hear what they thought of it. I love to talk about these treasured books as if the stories are real. I love to hash out the details with fellow readers.
One of my friends is a skimmer. She skims books! It’s a good thing she has so many other amazing qualities that make her a good friend. This one thing, the skimming, is almost a deal-breaker in our friendship. It requires me to extend buckets of grace to her. She has read nearly every book I love, but when I try to talk to her about some detail of the story, she draws a blank. Her typical response: “Umm, I’m not sure I remember that part.” What?!
My friend is not the only skimmer. We skim through Facebook and Instagram posts, as well as tweets. We skim emails. We skim notes for a test. We skim our children’s homework. (That can’t just be me, can it?) We skim directions for a recipe. We even skim speed limit signs. (That must be why we get caught speeding, right?)
The trouble comes when we skim in our relationship with God. We throw up a prayer as we head into an interview. We skim a devotional email, not even bothering to read the Scripture. We skim the pastor’s sermon in that we listen for a bit, then zone out for a bit to wonder what’s for lunch. And then we wonder why we don’t feel very close to God.
2017 is the year to dig in. Let’s commit to read Scripture straight from the Bible, taking time to marinate in its meaning and how it affects our life. Let’s get on our knees and pray for loved ones to be drawn to the LORD, for relationships to be reconciled, and for God to be glorified in all that we say and do. Let’s surrender our every decision to God. Let’s discipline our bodies and minds through fasting one meal per week. Let’s not be a body of believers who merely skim the surface of Christianity. Let’s dig in!
“So get rid of all the filth and evil in your lives, and humbly accept the word God has planted in your hearts, for it has the power to save your souls. But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves. For if you listen to the word and don’t obey, it is like glancing at your face in a mirror. You see yourself, walk away, and forget what you look like. But if you look carefully into the perfect law that sets you free, and if you do what it says and don’t forget what you heard, then God will bless you for doing it.” (James 1:21-25)
So, we’re 19 days into the new year. Are you ready for a blessing in 2017? I don’t know about you, but I certainly don’t want to just be fooling myself. I choose to “look carefully” at God’s Word and “do what it says.” I’m ready for a blessing this year. I’m ready to dig in.
What about you?