So I made it through my classes today, although I'm not sure why I wouldn't have made it through. For some reason it just feels like a big accomplishment.
I know a lot of my frustrations and emotional whirlwinds right now are due to my not reading the Bible regularly. To many people this may seem very cheesy, but I have been a Christian for quite a long time. Long enough to see both the clear benefit of reading the Word of God steadily and the clear disadvantage of ignoring it. I've fought this one specific battle (which is part of my testimony, though I do not feel comfortable talking about it to everyone) for almost four years. The first two years of the battle weren't really a battle... more of allowing my spiritual enemy to completely overrun my camp. These two years I did not once open up my Bible on my own time. By year three, which happened to coincide with the transition from high school to college, I finally had enough of it. I knew it was time for me to grow up and take responsibility for my spiritual health, so along with making several changes in my life I set out to memorize a bunch of scripture. The three that were my life-line at the time are these:
No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so you can stand up under it. (1 Corinthians 10:13)
But he [the Lord] said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me." (2 Corinthians 12:9)
He who conceals his sins does not prosper, but whoever confesses and renounces them finds mercy." (Proverbs 28:13)
Memorizing these three verses very specifically gave the Holy Spirit something to work with in my heart. See, I believe the whole purpose of memorizing scripture is to hide the Word of God in your heart. Perhaps that sounds to hokey for you. I sure always thought so. The phrase "hide God's word in your heart" always brought up images of some old woman sitting contentedly in some chair in a nursing home because she has so many verses stored to make her feel good in her last days. The phrase conjured up scenes from AWANAS and Bible Drill... scenes from my childhood only. None of it ever seemed to apply to my stage of life. Yet memorizing these three verses opened up a world of power to me. When faced with that same old demon, for once I had the power even to CONSIDER saying no. It revived my spiritual conscience. It gave the Holy Spirit permission to warn me when I was about to embrace my enemy.
And this could all happen even if I did not physically have the Bible in front of me. And that is precisely the purpose. It is easy to run from your physical Bible when you don't want to listen to God, but it is not easy to ignore the Holy Spirit's whispering scripture to you in that crucial moment when all you want to do is dive headfirst into trouble.
The part that still frustrates me is that, a year later, I don't feel like I have moved much from that point. Yet I know I have, even if I don't FEEL it. True, that same old enemy has followed me to Baylor, but it no longer has free reign over me.
I will probably spend the rest of my earthly life healing from these wounds.
And in some way, this struggle has come to define me...
Now these are the verses I am currently working on memorizing. I prayed over each one, and each is very specifically powerful in my situation.
Though your sins are like scarlet,
they shall be white as snow;
though they are red as crimson,
they shall be like wool.
If you are willing and obedient,
you will eat the best from the land.
When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross. (Colossians 2:13-14)
Do not gloat over me, my enemy!
Though I have fallen, I will rise.
Though I sit in darkness,
the LORD will be my light.
Because I have sinned against him,
I will bear the LORD's wrath,
until he pleads my case
and establishes my right
He will bring me out into the light;
I will see his righteousness.
Anyway, I now crave the red words. So I'm going to go read the red words.
Posted on Thu, September 4, 2008
by Hannah Decker filed under