I was listening to a GFA leader encourage us to pray and seek God when the commotion began.
In these first few minutes of the new year, I came across an article talking about "Planning an Intentional Devotion Life for 2010" and thought one particular paragraph was incredible.
You might remember the awesome Bible we have for our kids. I posted about it here. [Okay, I thought I had posted about our awesome kids Bible that we've read through three times and love to pieces, but apparently NOT. I cannot find the post that I thought I had written. So, just trust me that it's great and I'll write more about it soon.] Every story within the Bible takes it back to Jesus. We love it! Our kids love it. They have grown so much through our times of reading through that Bible together.
So, when I read this paragraph of this article, I just had to share it. Go read the whole article if you have a few minutes. If one of your goals for the new year has to do with spiritual growth (more prayer, read the Bible more, abide more, etc), it's a good article of encouragement.
This encouragement suggests what to look for as you read Scripture:
Look for Gospel patterns. As you read, realize that Jesus and the Gospel is The One Story of the Bible. Look for Gospel patterns, grace on display, as you read. Especially in the OT. Every story has Christ as the ultimate hero. For example, don't read the story of David and Goliath and leave your devotional time "ready to face your giants." Realize that you are Israel in the story, not David. You are weak, powerless, cowering before your enemies of sin, Satan, and death, and you need an anointed King to defeat your enemies and cause you to rise up in hope and courage. Jesus is the true and better David, and he is the point of the story of David and Goliath. Look for these patterns in everything you read and rejoice in what God has accomplished for you in Jesus. We don't have devotions and pray in order to avoid the guilt of not having devotions and not praying. We have devotions and pray to know Jesus and his Gospel, and revel in all that he is for us and all that he has won for us.This is something I've been learning a lot this year. I've known it for many years, but seeing it in each story as I read the stories to my kids this year (in that awesome Storybook Bible!) has helped me grow. It really is all about Jesus.
I plan to do my best to make 2010 all about Jesus in my life!