Steve spoke on Sunday continuing our series on Nehemiah, "I want my life back." This week we studied Nehemiah 8. So far in the story, Nehemiah followed the passion God put in his heart to go back to his home and help rebuild the wall around the city. Facing the risk of losing everything to ask the King for permission to leave, then facing opposition and threats against him and the people rebuilding the wall, the wall is finished, and finished quickly. This quieted Nehemiah's enemies, because they realized the Lord was with Nehemiah. Now that the wall is rebuilt around the city for protection, Nehemiah realizes that the people need their lives rebuilt as well. So what does he do, he turns to the Word of God. The people of that day had such a reverence for God's Word, they stood whenever it was being read. They hung on to every word, listening to what God had to say to them.
Steve spoke about how even though the Bible is the most reliable book, the most purchased book, ironically the most shoplifted book, it is the most neglected book as well. People who lived just a few hundred years after Jesus walked the earth, would pay equivalent to $300,000 to have a copy of the Word of God. Do you think you might appreciate the Bible a little more if you paid that much for it?
We have such easy access to the Bible we take it for granted. There are people who have risked and even lost their lives to get their hands on the Bible or get a Bible in someone else hand. You might have a few copies at your home that sit around and collect dust.
The Bible is the Living Word of God, it is active and alive. Through it God can speak to you and change your life. It is amazing how many times I am dealing with something personally and I sit to read the Bible and am either completely challenged or encouraged in whatever area it is I am working through. Many people don't feel like they "hear" God, yet they don't sit down long enough, open up His word and allow Him to speak through the words and stories that He has written.
I challenge you to spend some time in God's Word. It is well equipped to be the foundation for your life. If you don't think it has anything to say to you, challenge God to show you something in His word that speaks to your life. I believe God delights in those challenges. Make sure you have a relevant translation (if you have a King James Version KJV, try something that might read a little easier). If you don't have a good Bible, let me know and I will send you one for Free. Don't know where to start reading. The Gospel John is a good place, or if you want to look for a certain topic check out The Bible Yellow pages http://www.bibleyp.com/ that has scriptures broken down by topics. If you are looking for a wonderful Free Bible to download to your mobile device or for a good reading plan, check out www.youversion.com.
Don't use the excuse of you don't know how to read the Bible, or you don't have time to read it, keep you from allowing God to radically show himself to you and love on you in ways you have never experienced before. Give it a try, see what God wants to do in you and through you.