Last night, I was blessed with an extremely rare evening home alone(!) After getting my youngest off to bed, I made my favorite hot beverage (brevé cappuccino), lit a few candles, and made myself comfortable in front my fireplace.
I found myself surrounded by Bible dictionaries, commentaries, various Bible translations, and my brand-spanking-new spiral notebook. (I am such a nerd! And, I wear it well. Ha.)
The timing couldn’t be more perfect.
So, with my favorite Lab-Retriever sleeping contentedly by my side, I said a prayer asking God to guide my studies, and I got to work.
Fueled by my passion to learn, coupled with my quad-shot espresso fueled cappuccino, I was still going strong at 3:30 (Throat-clear…A.M.)
I honestly could not stop once I got started.
Funny enough, Jen warns that over doing Bible study can have similar ramifications as working out with a little bit too much gusto after a long break.
I totally feel her, but I couldn’t stop.
The awesome part? After a short 4 hour break for sleep and breakfast with my Sweet Sara, I found my comfortable spot back in front of my fireplace and went right on studying. (Good stuff!)
I started digging deep on John 10:27 in which Jesus says:
“My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.” (ESV)
I started looking at the Greek word for “know.” And, well, one thing led to another, and I fell passionately (back) in love with Bible study. (Big heart feels.)
Sadly, it’s been more than a long while since I’ve done more than just read my Bible and mediate on a few verses every day. I honestly didn’t have the brain capacity to do more than that.
And, although I would normally explain myself, I’m choosing to give myself grace.
As, Brené taught me, we are all [truly] doing the best we can. Grace—both given and received—goes a long ways.
At noon, took another intermission in my studies to pick up my two teenagers from their sleepover with friends last night.
As I made the 30 minute drive, I noticed something was radically different. But, it wasn’t something. It was me.
I was different.
I had been marinating in God’s Word and presence (thanks to my new Spotify playlist of powerful worship songs) for almost 9 hours straight!
Ah, that sweet, sweet feeling of peace that passes all understanding. (Wow.)
As I drove through town, I noticed myself praying for the people I passed. A homeless woman squatting next to a closed bank. A destitute looking couple lighting up their pipes at a bus stop. The light turned red, and I watched them smile with great pleasure as a sheriff passed by unconcerned. (‘Boo’ for the legalization of marijuana.)
Not the best scene for my 10-year-old to have to observe. But, I felt love and compassion for the people I saw. And, it felt more natural than ever to offer up prayers on their behalf.
I’m not exactly sure what God is doing in my heart and through this season. But, I am thankful. And, excited.
So, what did I do when I got back home?!? You know it, I re-lit my candles, pressed through the occasional yawns, and kept digging.
Intentional Bible study is addictive, y’all!
If you aren’t currently in the Word, I encourage you to dust off your Bible and grab your shovel. There are so many incredible jewels waiting to be discovered, Friend.
So. Um. Yeah! I did it! I have successfully finished my 31 Days of Writing in October Challenge!!!
I honestly didn’t expect to write every single day, but I did! I’m so thrilled to know I can let go of my need for perfection, get the words out, and hit publish without my former fear and struggle. I call that a huge success! (Thank you, LORD.)
And, thank you, Friend, for following along. I appreciate you!
The comments are still cricket-status, but I do know I have a few readers every day. No pressure, but I sure would love to hear from you and interact a bit. (Warm smile.)
Looking forward to seeing where the next 31 days bring me.
Have a wonderful weekend!
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Photo Credit: Amy Jo Ivey / “Things to Come” / Leaving Revelstoke, British Columbia / June 2015