Proverbs 3:7a – Do not be wise in your own eyes. (NIV)
Knowing God on a deeper level is the topic and aim of the Bible study which I am currently teaching. When we resumed in October, we were privileged to have a new lady join us.
From the outset, her wide-eyed wonder and excitement over each new biblical truth was like a fresh injection of the Holy Spirit. She was so thirsty that she wanted to drink in every new thought as we examined what each particular word or phrase of Scripture meant in the passage we were studying. It seemed as if most of the concepts were foreign to her, and she wanted to know what they meant and how God wanted to apply them to her life.
That day, the Father lovingly opened up new truths to my mind, which I thought I had previously understood. I might easily have passed over them due to their familiarity, had it not been for the incisive questions of our new member.
After I went home, I felt humbled and chastened by the Holy Spirit, as He quietly whispered a few pointed questions to my spirit. How could I have been so arrogant? To assume that I knew all that God wanted to teach me from a specific passage, that I would dare to skip over it without taking time to further examine its depth of meaning, left me rather shaken. I immediately asked the Lord's forgiveness.
Because of the eager, questioning mind of this lady, the Holy Spirit had rained down His blessings upon all of us, despite my ignorance. His presence had been very evident in our group that day.
All of us, particularly the teacher, learned a great deal about approaching our study with far more reverence from then on. It seemed as if we all had somehow lost some of the awesomeness of approaching the Word of God. So our loving Lord used a new Christian to open our eyes to the wonder and privilege that we had in being allowed to learn new truths from Him from His precious Word.
The words of a familiar chorus came to mind as I sat quietly listening to what the Spirit was teaching me:
- Open my eyes, that I may see
Glimpses of truth Thou hast for me;
Place in my hands the wonderful key
That shall unclasp, and set me free.
Silently now I wait for Thee,
Ready my God Thy will to see;
Open my eyes, illumine me, Spirit divine.
– Clara H. Scott
May I be so bold as to challenge my readers with this question: Have you become too familiar and possibly even a bit careless about approaching God's Holy Word? Have you ever, like me, been in a hurry and merely skimmed through a familiar passage instead of waiting to see what new truths the Spirit might want to teach you?
Prayer: Help us, O Father, not to fall into the enemy's trap of allowing familiarity to breed contempt when it comes to reading Your Word. Help us to approach each new reading of Your Word as fresh food for our spirits. May we be thankful for Your never-ending patience, love, and forgiveness of Your children if we become careless and begin to take You or Your Word for granted. We ask this in Jesus' name. Amen.