I wrote that post last Thursday about my thoughts on Initiative 26, and it got me thinking. First of all, I desperately hope it was taken for what it was– a passionate plea for believers to set Scripture as the foundational basis for decision making– and not as an attack against Christians who may disagree with me. I discussed this briefly (as part of a larger discussion) with a friend who commented on that post, and if you did take that post that way, I hope that you will click here to see my entire response.
So I have been thinking about that alot this weekend. About the fact that I firmly believe that these decisions should be based on what we know to be true in the Word of God, and that choosing to let anything else be a greater factor in decision-making is a dangerous place to be. Alot of the believers who are speaking out in support of this initiative are being criticized for not being able to separate their religious beliefs from the rest of their lives…for letting their faith and the Bible “muddy the waters.” I take that as a compliment. That’s part of being a Christian. It isn’t relegated to a few safe sections of your life, but it encompasses all of it. My faith must dictate what goes on in the rest of my life.
But I’ve also been unbelievably convicted about it. Yes, I believe in the Word of God. I believe that it is the way that God has ordained to guide us, teach us, and reveal Himself to us. I believe that every aspect of my life should reflect a mind and heart that are so steeped in His Word that my first response to anything should be a desire for my thoughts and actions to be in accordance with His word and His heart.
But I have to confess that that’s not always the case. Most of the time my selfish heart takes over and makes decisions based upon what’s best for me, what will work out best in my favor, what will be the easiest, what keeps my image in tact, what is popular. I base decisions on the guidance of my husband, my friends, my parents, my sisters, what I hear on the news, what I read on facebook, or what I find in a Google search. That is sad. My heart will quicker turn to search for truth on Google than in the Word of God. But oftentimes, it’s true.
But as a Christian, I’m called to something greater than that, and I yearn for it. Yes those are good and helpful sources, and God has given me the ability to reason and logically sift through advice from other places, but they must remain secondary. They must fall in line with His Word, or be discarded.
Several times over the weekend, I found myself reading and re-reading Psalm 119. I kept going back there, because the Psalmist keeps talking about how believes and trusts and loves God’s Word to direct his steps and guide his thoughts, but then he begs for God to teach him His word, to reveal it to him, to show him the truth found there, even though he already knows it.
That’s how I feel. I keep saying to God, “I love your Word, but teach me to love your Word!”
So that passionate plea for Christians to start their search in Scripture goes out to all of those who have told me that they just can’t justify putting the Bible before what their doctor or attorney friend told them, or a personal and moving story they heard, or the doubt that has crept in.
But it also goes out to myself, because I have to preach to myself constantly. It’s a plea directed towards my own heart to place the Word of God before the word of men. Not just in this once instance, but in every single area of my life. Every decision, every day. Because it is my sustenance. It is truth. And it makes me yearn to know my Bible so much more than the little bit that I do, because that’s how God reveals Himself to His children. I can’t trust my word. Or yours(…no offense). But I can trust His. And I pray that he will teach me to.
9 How can a young person stay on the path of purity?
By living according to your word.
10 I seek you with all my heart;
do not let me stray from your commands.
11 I have hidden your word in my heart
that I might not sin against you.
12 Praise be to you, LORD;
teach me your decrees.
13 With my lips I recount
all the laws that come from your mouth.
14 I rejoice in following your statutes
as one rejoices in great riches.
15 I meditate on your precepts
and consider your ways.
16 I delight in your decrees;
I will not neglect your word.