Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Life Verse

Year 5 - Day 157: Today, I am grateful for the value of a "life verse". 

What is a life verse? Several years ago, our Wednesday night kids at church... with their leaders... choose a "life verse" for the year to memorize, ponder and apply to their lives. 

Some chose carefully and were not afraid of a longer passage. Others went for short but sweet. All attempted to find something that fit them. They would first read it... then they would memorize it and by the end of the school year, many knew not only their life verse, but others as well. 

It was honestly, kind of something we did on a whim, that became really personal and meaningful. I like to think it was the Spirit leading. It became a favorite, ritual part of the evening.  There was laughter and fun as shared their "word from The Word." Of course, the adults choose theirs, too. 

The past couple years, I have not been a part the regular of the Wednesday night youth leadership, except to substitute and visit for worship. I have been delighted (and after the first time prepared) that the teens have requested to continue in the yearly commitment to a "life verse". 

Why does it matter? It is an intentional act of applying the Word of God to their hearts and their lives. They've tasted and found The Word to be satisfying and good. Oh, it is good! I am excited that as they walk through life, those verses will continue to be very personal and will grow deep roots in their hearts. 

Mine have been:
"Be Still and know I AM God." Psalm 46:10

"I am doing a great work and I cannot come down.  Nehemiah 6:3
I did not know the changes ahead in that year when the verses were chosen.

"Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego answered and said to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to answer you in this matter. If this be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of your hand, O king. But if not, be it known to you, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.” -Daniel 3:16-18
The year would be a lesson in God's sovereignty and his love... even when facing trials.

"And the LORD answered me: Write the vision;make it plain on tablets, so he may run who reads it." Habakkuk 2:2

The year I discovered Bible Journaling, growing in hunger for the word and discovering new morsels of truth to build endurance, strength and hope. 

"My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world. And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments." - 1 John 2:1-3
A season of settling into the true awe and magnitude of ALL that Christ means to us... individually and as a family of believers. When I kneel before God, Jesus pleads my case. What evidence of faithfulness will my life provide? 

Today is a great day to begin pondering and picking a life verse. You can wait until the new year or start now. The great things is that once you have made a verse your own, it is a constant companion... until it feels like an old friend. 

Discovering His Word... and growing eager to steep yourself in its wisdom... reminds me of a phrase from a Shel Silverstein poem, "Anything can happen child. Anything can be." Rooted in His Word... we can grow practically anywhere, no matter the adversity or complexity of the situation. We were not born to merely "survive", but to "thrive". 

"So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith— being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God." -Ephesians 3:17-19

That is worth reviewing again:

"that you,...may have strength to comprehend...to know the love of Christ ... and be filled with all the fullness of God." 

Am I strong enough to comprehend the depth of Christ's love and receive the fueling, filling, fullness of God? His Word provides the training material. Pause, pray and participate in the practice of scripture application. 

It will strengthen you for this day, and build your endurance for whatever comes next. This world has trouble, but we are not alone. 

Today, I am grateful for the value of a "life verse". 

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