Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "How Sweet The Name Of Jesus Sounds"1 (Lyrics)
"Can you come over? The sewing machine that you loaned me isn't working right." My neighbour was frustrated. It was a new machine that had been used only a few times. What could go wrong?
My first attempt to fix it didn't work. I tried everything: changing the needle, changing the bobbin, rethreading it. Nothing worked. I looked through the manual and couldn't find anything else. "I'm sorry, but I can't see why it isn't working. Let me think about it and do some research."
A few days later, I returned for one more try; then, I checked the troubleshooting guide in the manual and discovered the answer that I hadn't seen before: a switch was out of place. I moved it and the machine worked like it was supposed to.
Psalm 119:105 – Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. (NKJV)
As believers, we have the ultimate manual: God's Word, the Bible. Like my attempt to fix that machine, sometimes, we have to return to the Bible several times before we absorb and understand and are ready to implement what we have read about a particular problem.
While the Bible may not provide exact instructions for every situation in life, there are guidelines and principles that we can apply to every situation. Here are just a few:
- How do I interact with the people in my family, my neighbourhood, my church, etc.? "And what does the Lord require of you but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?" (Micah 6:8b NKJV) Those three actions should cover most situations.
- What kind of attitude should I have as I go about my day? "Put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do. But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection." (Colossians 3:12b-14 NKJV). Can you imagine what the world would be like if we all acted that way?
- How can I have an abundant life? "I [Jesus] have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly." (John 10:10b NKJV) That doesn't mean that we won't have any problems, but we will have peace and joy in the midst of whatever we're facing.
The Bible is the only manual that provides guidelines for living a fruitful and fulfilling life. It must be part of our daily lives, something that we read often, refer to in any situation, and meditate upon as we go through our day. In order to understand God's instruction manual rightly, we must read it prayerfully, carefully, and with ever-increasing understanding, asking the Holy Spirit for guidance and direction for our lives.
2 Timothy 3:16-17 – Every scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for showing mistakes, for correcting, and for training character, so that the person who belongs to God can be equipped to do everything that is good. (CEB)
Prayer: Lord, help us to commit to daily study and communication with You through Your Word. Amen.