Give Heed to Your Priorities

Why is it so easy to simply forget about God’s Word?

For some time I had been endeavoring to read the Scriptures daily (isn’t it funny that we have to work so hard at doing something that is so easy and so profitable?). Furthermore I was keeping a daily journal of what I was reading and what it was saying. Each day I typically tried to read through one chapter and take notes on it and confer other references mentioned in my Bible. I usually chose a chapter or book that corresponded with whatever I was having to face in my life at the time. If finances were any issue for me, I would read chapters where Jesus spoke of finances (and worry) or maybe even the Proverbs. If it was ministry I would read something like one of the Timothy epistles (Paul’s guidance to a young minister).

Earlier this year as I was researching my family history, I began to lament that there are no writings or any other media that has been passed down through my family that I can use to glean insight into my forefathers’ lives and thoughts and personalities. So, determined to change that, I began inserting insights or advice or just short notes into my journal that I hope my children and grandchildren will one day read. It is my desire that what I am now learning will be profitable to them someday.

So How’s That Working For Ya?

I have been going to my doctor regularly to have blood work done in order to keep an eye on my cholesterol. Heart disease runs in my family: my father has had a heart attack and bypass surgery, his father died of a heart attack, and his father did as well. A huge part of my staying healthy is regular exercise. I have been on a routine for a while now where I will jog/run for 30 minutes every afternoon. We have a treadmill which I can program and it has worked very well for me. In addition I have been doing some weight training (nothing major) because I want to stay strong and not just get skinnier and skinnier from the running. I have been very dedicated to staying healthy because I want to be one of those folks who live to be 100 years old. If I don’t, no big deal; I’ll just be with the Lord sooner. But anyway, I have been proud of the way I have been able to consistently work out and eat better (even though being in the South with all this yummy fried food doesn’t help!).

Now how do you think that’s jiving with my Bible study regimen? Not too good. I have noticed that as my regularity in exercise has increased, my regular Bible study has decreased. I have not the discipline to do either first thing in the morning. And once I get home and I have exercised, I am usually ready for a break or ready to watch the Andy Griffith Show or go to Perry Players rehearsal. Today when I arrived at work we had some down time so I took a moment to read a Psalm and then a Proverb. It occurred to me how little I have read the scriptures lately and it broke my heart. I have been consistently running each afternoon (though it is hard work and very tiring), yet I have not taken the time to sit in a quiet room, in the presence of the Lord, and read the Bible (though it is easy and very refreshing).

What does it profit a man if he gains the world (or lives to be 100, or is in the best shape of his life, or gets to watch every single Andy Griffith episode ever made) and loses his own soul?

Now I know that I am not doomed to Hell if I do not have a daily Bible reading. But one sure notices a change in his attitude and almost a disconnect with the Lord. Because if you let that quiet time with diminish, a decrease in one’s prayer life will follow. I feel that I have no peace lately and I have been short-tempered. Also do you ever find that the more you study the Scriptures the more insight and understanding of the Word you seem to have yet if you stop for several months and then come back to it, it is as if you are starting over again? I am not sure if that makes sense, but that is how it is for me.

I would rather be an unhealthy blob outwardly, than to be wasting away inwardly. But then again it is not an either/or situation is it? What wasteful thing is there in my life that should be forfeited so that I might strengthen my spirit as well as my body? I am sure there’s something!

Josh H.

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