Your Bible - Your Testimony
Growing up, I was taught the Bible. I read it and had it read to me, memorized the order of the chapters, memorized key life scriptures and more. I appreciate my time as a child getting into the word. I appreciate my parents taking the time to give me this foundation. Although I walked away from God for many years, the words instilled in me as a child were never lost.
As an adult however, my relationship with God and the Bible has become something a bit deeper. I have made my Bible my “go-to life manual.” I depend on it for wisdom, direction, encouragement, inspiration, and revelation. As I hear or come across scripture that speaks to my heart, I highlight, underline or make notes. I purchased Bible highlighters of multiple colors and pens as well (see pic below of my Bible and supplies). When something significant is happening and my prayer is answered with scripture, I put the date by it and maybe a small note. This is my way of being able to remember specifics of what God has done for me. It keeps me from ever doubting His ability or presence. It is my proof and reminder of what He has done!
I recently had to get a new Bible because my Bible I had for about 5 years was starting to look like it had gone through a war. In fact, at different times within those years, it did! Just a couple of things that happened during those 5 years: We had two major interstate moves (hello stress!), my oldest son moved to Hawaii, my middle son moved out and my youngest son went off to college- rendering my husband and I empty nesters! Although I understand this is the natural order of things, and I am proud of the life they each are leading, this transition hit me harder than I ever could have imagined!
Also, within that time, I left the job of my dreams as a Domestic Violence Advocate/Special Events Coordinator when we moved. That move was a double whammy in fact, because we also left behind our beautiful, supportive and loving church family. And unfortunately… during a brief moment within those 5 years, I had an unwelcomed person from my past come storming into my life bringing turmoil, disruption and chaos. That was an all-out assault by the enemy, in which I was completely blindsided. But through the sad and even the scary, God was right there.
There were many good things that came within those 5 years as well. Too many to even mention but a quick few are: I went on my first international mission trip to Poland, I became a Grandma 3 times over, made many new friends in two states, found a new church and got involved, traveled, had a successful (1 year) blog dedicated to my cousin that ended up being followed in 16 countries, and I even (eventually) found my “empty nester” groove together with my husband, Vinny. Those are just a couple of highlights. This is the ebb and flow of life. Up, down, blessed and even at times attacked by the enemy - being made victim to his wicked schemes. But God was there ushering me calmly through it all. Keeping me grounded, humble and in the service of others in the good times and safe, loved and confident in His arms during the bad.
What I have learned through it all is the absolute necessity of getting deeper into my Bible in every season! When I look in that old Bible of mine, I am reminded of so many events in the last 5 years. But what swells my heart most is to see clearly how God answered me and how He showed up and provided exactly what He knew I needed in my life. He was there through it all and the colorful, dated and noted pages give my faith a steady, firm foundation to rest upon.
Some may think it is disrespectful to His word to write in it, highlight, makes notes, etc. I can only speak for myself. And what I know for certain is that when I got IN my Bible, God got deeper in my life and my very soul. I believe that when God sees us making the Bible our own, He is pleased that we are finding beauty and bringing our beautiful, unique personality and meeting Him right where He is and where He wants us to be.
So, my encouragement to you today is this: Don’t be afraid to get in your Bible - in your own beautiful way. Record dates, make notes, use color coded tabs, insert post it notes, highlight, circle, underline, draw pictures or whatever moves you… just get in His word today and listen to what God is saying to you. Expect revelation and transformation! One day you will look back and your Bible will reveal your testimony.
1 Thessalonians 2:13 - Hebrews 4:12 - 1 Peter 1:25 - Ephesians 6:17
Matthew 4:4 - 2 Timothy 3:16 - Psalm 119:105 - Luke 11:28
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