My wife is currently enrolled in a Master’s Program at Northwestern University. I’m so proud of her. She is doing an excellent job of balancing her time between her coursework and spending time with our son. One way she is able to do this is by waking up super early in the morning. She’s up hours before either me or our son. Some days I think she’s a machine. I’m not so sure how she does it, but she does.
One morning I was sitting in bed as she was in our study hard at work. I noticed something strange. Even though she wasn’t in the bed any more, I continued to stay on “my side”. I could have sprawled and enjoyed the comfort of our bed. But I had been conditioned. And God said to me, “That’s exactly how you treat My Word.” Wow. Ouch.
I began to think about how easy it is to stay in my comfort zone when it comes to Scripture. Pauline Epistles? Love ’em. Gospels? Can’t get enough of ’em. And I think there are others out there like me. When was the last time you read (and enjoyed) Leviticus? That daily devotional of yours include a genealogy in Numbers? Probably not. I just sat in my bed thinking. My wife got up so I could sprawl. And here’s the simple truth there:
Jesus got up so you could sprawl.
Most of us are more comfortable reading the New Testament. We think it relates more to our situations. But it’s called the “whole counsel of God” (See Acts 20:27) for a reason. I want to encourage you to flip a few pages back. Dive into the minor prophets. Read some difficult texts that you tend to skip over because they don’t speak directly to you. When Paul wrote that ALL Scripture was God-breathed (see 2 Timothy 3:16), he meant it. Let me share something I try to do when I read tough passages from the Old Testament:
I filter every passage I read through the lens of the Cross.
Remember when Jesus encountered the disciples on the Emmaus walk? The text says that he spent this six mile journey showing these two men how the Jewish Scriptures (i.e. the Old Testament) were all about him. Think about that. Every jot and tittle (yes, even those geneologies) pointed to Jesus. A lot of us have trouble with Old Testament passages. Especially seeing how they related to Jesus. Here’s an excellent resource to help you in this process.
My prayer today is that we don’t treat God’s Word the way I decided to treat my bed. All that space to sprawl and I just sat there in my corner. Get out of your Philippians corner. Get out of your Gospels corner. He got up so you could sprawl.