The Key to Blessings

For the Word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. —Hebrews 4:12 God is at work in you. You can hinder His work, or receive it and let Him shape your present and future. There is a key to receiving the blessings that go with the process.

Many of us started January 2017 off eagerly, with great intentions. Exercise. Eat right. Follow a program to help us grow spiritually. This is the year to get it right.

If you stick with any resolution, make God’s Word the priority, with the right motives.

When I was young, I studied the Word zealously, approaching the Bible with a list of questions, determined to find answers. Nothing wrong with that, except that often my motives were skewed by my desire to dazzle others with my vast Bible knowledge. But as I matured, the Word worked in my life. I began to realize the depth, the riches, the power God’s Word has in my life. I see something new every time I read even familiar passages and long told stories. Now, I can honestly say, I don’t know as much now as I thought I did 20 years ago.

God’s Word is living, piercing, and works in our lives in ways we cannot fathom.

A linear philosophy depicts life as a straight line, past to future. Since the past is gone, the future unknowable, the emphasis becomes the present. All that matters is now.

But in the Hebrew culture, in which God’s Word was inspired, life is a circle. Recorded histories take meticulous care to recount events, records, and genealogies. The past and its lessons are a window to our future. When you first learn a truth, it is only on one level. Each time we return to that lesson, in life or in history, we gain a new level of understanding and enlightenment. We never fully arrive—we just keep going deeper and higher and gaining new understanding. Studying God's Word is like that.

This year, allow God’s Word into your life consistently. It will change you, inspire you, and lead you into greater understanding of your God, of yourself, and of your world.

DEVOTIONALSRay Bentley