Hey friends, it’s been awhile! I’ve struggled lately to get to this blog. I’ve struggled to find things to write. It’s been a stressful season of life for me this last year and a half and I’m just beginning to come out on the other side. I needed some rest. I hope to write a future posts on all God has been teaching me these last 18 months. But for now, I’ve found something that has sparked my heart and soul and I wanted to share with you all.
I’ve begun using a new Bible study/devotional resource recently—Journibles. Have you heard of them? I had not until a friend shared them with me. I was intrigued so, of course, I headed over to Amazon to check them out! I decided to purchase one based on Psalm 119 (one of my favorite psalms). It was $4 and I felt worth the cost to try it out. (Sidebar: I have a tendency to “collect” books and Bible studies and Bible study resources and never use them to their fullest potential).
I love Journibles! It’s simple. You are given space to write out books of Scripture. Each page gives you designated verses to write that day. Verses references and blank lines are on the right hand side of the page for you to copy the Scriptures (great if your right-handed). On the left side of the page is blank space for you to journal/record your thoughts on those verses. Every so often in a watermark effect there is a question to answer or ponder. If you’ve read any of my posts or studied with me in person, you know I encourage slowing down to take in God’s Word rather than rushing through to “get through” a chapter or check off having another Bible study under your belt. God’s Word is water and nourishment for our hungry and thirsty souls and spirits. We need to take the time to get into the Word and allow the Word to work it’s way into us!
It’s amazing how writing out verses of Scripture help you to do just that…slow down! I’ve read and studied Psalm 119 many times before and I can tend to glance/speed read at times through familiar passages. Writing out these verses slowed me down (for one thing, I didn’t want to have to scratch through or “mess up” my pretty new Journible). In slowing down I picked up on things that I had glossed over in the past.
Another great suggestion from the publishers at Journibles is these books of handwritten Scripture, and your personal thoughts and applications, can become a legacy for you to leave for future generations in your life. I love this idea! I love God’s Word. I want to know and live out God’s Word and I want my children and grandchildren and future generations to know and love and live out God’s Word!
Here are a few thoughts from my first day of Journibles from Psalm 119:1-11.
If you’ve read this psalm before you know that each section begins with a letter of the Hebrew alphabet. It’s an acrostic. Throughout the psalm there are references to the Word of God using a variety of words: statutes, commandments, precepts, law, word etc…It’s all about the Word of God in our lives!
I noticed in the first 11 verses it was all about ways and walks and wanderings. It’s about what brings about a blessed life.
We learn the one who walks in the ways of the Lord is:
- do no wrong
- not put to shame
We learn the Word of God in our lives does the following for us:
- directs our way
- protects from sin
- guides us
- guards us (literally this word in the original language means “to put a hedge around”)
- makes us steadfast
- keeps our way pure
- brings joy and an attitude of praise
In contrast, we learn that when we…
- fail to seek the Lord with our whole hearts
- fail to store His Word in our minds
- fail to obey His Word
- fail to make His Word a priority in our lives
…we become wanderers.
I’ve been wandering lately through much of life. It’s not fun. It’s stressful. It’s unsettling. I’ve been seeking direction and purpose in some areas of my life. I’ve been asking the Lord, “what’s next”? I’ve been confused. I’ve been discouraged. I’ve been a wanderer.
- I want to be steadfast, even if I don’t have the answers to the direction for this season of my life.
- I want to be courageous, even if I don’t know what God has planned next.
- I want to walk about in a spirit of rejoicing and praise, rather than grumbling and complaining.
This passage confirmed for me that continuing to make God’s Word a priority, to store it up in my heart and mind and to meditate upon it throughout my day is the answer.
This I know…
God’s Word is living and active, energizing and powerful, sharper than any two-edge sword, even to the dividing of joint and marrow, soul and spirit and it judges the thoughts and intentions of my heart. It brings me great joy!
What about you, are you wandering or waiting and watchful in the Word of God each day?
I’ll close with one of my favorite hymns. It reminds me that as a Jesus follower, clothed in this body of flesh, my tendency will be to have a heart that is prone to wander. But I live by the grace of God and the Word of God is my anchor and the light for my path. Guiding. Directing. Securing. Protecting. Providing. Proving.