Thursday, June 04, 2009

I Was a Defeated, Backslidden Christian!

For many years I lived a defeated, back-slidden Christian life, then one day, God sent a woman to knock on my door (one of those "visits" back-slidden folks hate so much!) to tell me that if I would read just four chapters a day from the Bible, I would read the entire Bible through, in its entirety, once every year and the New Testament twice.
   Her obedience and wise counsel changed my life
  Since 1981, I have been reading my Bible every day, always picking up today where I left off yesterday. I made a commitment, back then, to establish time with the Lord every day. I have kept that commitment.  It was much more difficult at first than it is now.
   My "quiet time" is always in the morning. The first thing I reach for when I get up every day is my coffee cup—the second thing is my Bible. As I enjoy my first cup of steaming coffee (I usually drink 1 to 2), the Word of God is seeping into my sleepy consciousness as I ease into to full wakefulness and the day ahead.
   Without fail, after just a few minutes, Jesus and I are having a good visit (it is always more than just reading—It really is a deeply personal time that I spend together with my Savior).
   Some may object, claiming that getting ready for work (and children off to school) every day makes morning time for the Bible impossible.
   My response is, that you cannot afford not to make time for Jesus.
   When my children were young, I had to be finished with my personal time before 6am in order to get them ready for school. Then, for many years after that, I had to get up in time to be ready for work five mornings a week. 
   Sometimes my job required me to travel extensively (at one point, I was on the road for six weeks of the eight!).  My morning visit with Jesus went with me—I did not leave my routine at home (that is value of establishing good habits).
   On another occasion I was required to work from 8:00 each morning to 10:00 or 11:00 each night for a short period of time (and had an hour commute each way on top of that). During that time my routine did not vary. So, do not ask me to sympathize with anyone who cannot make time for the Word of God because of work schedules, business, or family obligations, or simply because you do not like to read.
   Consider this a challenge to all who are serious about putting Jesus first in their lives.
   Make time for your own personal relationship with your Savior, and do not allow the television or radio to be what starts your day each morning!
   Each of us makes time for things that are truly important to us. If we do not make time for God and his Word, could it be that our relationship with Him is not all that important to us? Try making and keeping a commitment to know your Savior and his Bible better. Spend time with him on a daily basis, and see if that does not make a wonderful difference in your life.
   For me, it really was as simple as that.

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