What’s one of the best things about a Christmas feast? Not having to cook for days. All that effort braving the supermarkets, glazing the ham, stuffing the turkey – it’s worth it when you can just lay on the ham sandwiches meal after meal. Living on Xmas leftovers: what a life.
But eventually you have to start planning a grocery shop again, and working out what you’ll eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner each day.
Yet too often we live off spiritual food from God’s life-giving Word in the same post-Christmas fashion: grab whatever pops up off our social feeds, a snippet from Sunday, a hurried line or two before we dive into our daily dose of doomscrolling.
If we can’t live off Christmas food forever, why would we think that we can do the same spiritually? Besides, it’s hard to stay fuelled up if we’re relying on a mountain-top moment like a conference experience, a baptism, or emotional high. God designed us to keep “eating”, because true happiness grows when we delight in God’s life-giving Word.
So don’t leave it up to randomness whether you’ll feed well in 2021. If you don’t have some kind of plan to immerse yourself in the Bible, can I encourage you to start one. If you’ve fallen off the wagon, just start again! His grace is sufficient in our weakness.
Here’s a few suggestions:
- Try a Bible reading plan – You can make it through the Bible in a year, 2 years, or even 6 months. There’s all kinds of apps to help, such as Read Scripture by the Bible Project team. The key isn’t to go through the Word, but let it go through you.
- Use a daily devotional – check out Tim Keller’s My Rock My Refuge (a year through the Psalms), or the “Dwell” app, or Paul Tripp’s New Morning Mercies.
- Memorise – I think this is what the Psalmist encourages when he says the blessed one “delights in the Law (torah, instruction) of the LORD and on it meditates day and light” (Ps 1:3). Have a go with Psalm 1 and see how far you get. Or be inspired by David and Angela’s stories of fruitful, life-giving Scripture memorisation.
- Get creative – I’ve loved Poor Bishop Hooper’s project to set a Psalm to song every Wednesday. But maybe you could start with a sketch a day, or doodling in the margins of your Bible as you read it (!), painting a favourite verse, Minecrafting a story… let’s make the most of the canvases our Creator God’s gifted us!
We plan what we’ll eat each day… so what would it look like for you to do the same with God’s nourishing, life-giving Word?
Photo credit: Kiyoko L