Thursday, January 21, 2016

"person-alize" your Bible!

The Word for today:
Isaiah 56, 57
Yesterday, Pastor Joe contributed an article he called "Why Stand in the Rain?"
I loved it. For me, it brought a new dimension to Isaiah 55:8-11, which happens to be the theme passage for this 3-year Bible reading program we call "Stand in the Rain."
The blog you are reading accompanies the three year schedule. We publish every day, in many different venues. If you haven't yet, I hope you'll click here, which takes you to our original site. In a sidebar to the left you'll find an explanation of just why we call the program "Stand in the Rain."
But more important than anything--and I mean anything--is that you locate the words "reading schedule here." They are in bright blue, hoping to attract your eye.
Clicking them will transport you to the reading schedule.  Find "Year Two" of the schedule and wheel your way down to January 21. It will say "Isaiah 56, 57." Now take your eyes off the monitor and your hand off the mouse. Locate a Bible. Open to the middle and then flip 100 or so pages forward until you reach Isaiah 56.
I have found just one thing in this entire world that makes any real difference. And I just went through an elaborate scheme to connect you two.
"You two."  The way that's phrased makes it sound like I connected you with somebody instead of just something.
May it be so.
Some people have a personalized Bible. They have their name engraved on the cover. I propose that we all personalize our Bibles.  Using our "Stand in the Rain" theme passage, I'll show you how:
As the rain and the snow
come down from heaven,
and do not return to it
without watering the earth
and making it bud and flourish,
so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater,
so is my word that goes out from my mouth:
It will not return to me empty,
but will accomplish what I desire
and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.  (Isaiah 55:10-11)
Now -- quick, like a bunny -- who came down from heaven, bringing living water? Go to John 4:7-14 and you'll find out!
And who sowed the seed? Go to Matthew 13:3.
And who was the Bread of life? Go to John 6:48.
Who was the Word God "spoke" to express his heart? See John 1:1, 14; John 3:16; Hebrews 1:1-2.
Who returned to his Father, having achieved God's purpose? Go to Acts 1:9.
If you answered "Jesus" to the questions above, you have just personal-ized your Bible! Now your Bible isn't conceptual, it's person-al!  Now it isn't poetry and figures of speech, it's a person.
May it be so.  May you two meet.  May you fall in love.  May you take his name.  May you stand forever together, in the rain.

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