The other day while looking through my Instagram feed, I was encouraged to see a couple of photos of a life group reading the Word for our Lent2017 Read Together, Feast Together, together! By participating in this plan, I hope many of you are able to read wider and deeper into the Scriptures.
But reading the Bible is not enough. In faith, we must read the Word so that it speaks into our hearts. Also in faith, we must meditate on the Word, turning it over again and again our minds until the nutrient of the passage is released. Then, we must exercise our faith again, praying the Word, so that the truth of God would be lived out in our lives by the power of the Spirit. If we work Romans 10:14-15 backward, it looks like this: the written word – preachers are sent – there are those who hear – some believe – believers call on God. The preached word, digested in the believers’ hearts, climaxes in “calling on the name of the Lord.” Word always ends in prayer. Prayer always drives us back to the Word.
So let’s make sure we’re doing both. The Word is bread and prayer is breath. He is our food and our air. If someone eats only once a week and insists he is fine, we would call him a madman. If someone holds their breath for five minutes, we would worry as his face takes on a bluish hue. We read and pray, pray and read, so that we can live spiritually.
If you’ve been following the Read Together plan diligently, you should have read about half the New Testament (avid plan), or all of Mark, Romans, and Acts (light plan) by now. That’s a significant amount of Scriptures. Wouldn’t it be sad if none of it remained in your head and heart? Without faith and prayer, that’s exactly what will happen. If we don’t pray, our convictions will grow tiny wings and flutter away to be forgotten. If we pray, our convictions will grow roots and dig into the soil of our hearts to bear fruit. Prayer turns what we read into what we believe and live.
Please continue to read, but make sure to carve out some time for prayer.