Friday, January 24, 2014

God's Word helps the "light bulb" come on!

We officially continued our new series this past Sunday "40 Days in the Word" with part 2" How does the Bible Change Me? You can listen to the podcast at or you can download it from iTunes  

We talked about how the Bible Transforms us. The Bible isn't like other books because the Bible is God's Word. It is alive and has power to change lives. We talked about how the Bible recreates our lives. You'll want to check out the link above. The past 3 blogs we talked about how God's Word helps get rid of our guilt, how the Bible builds our faith and how the Bible helps me grow. Let's look at part 5...

The fifth way is... God uses the Bible to illuminate my mind.

Have you ever had someone try to explain something to you but you just couldn’t get it. Someone try to explain something to you and you just couldn’t see it. Then all of a sudden, one word is said or one thing happens and the light bulb comes on. “Oh, now I get it. Oh, now I see it.” "Now it makes perfect sense."
God wants to illuminate our minds. God wants to open up His Word so that we not only understand it but it transforms our minds. So how does it work?  How does God turn the light on?  Psalm 119:130 says “Understanding your Word brings light to the minds of ordinary people.” 

The NLT says… “The teaching of your word gives light, so even the simple can understand

So God wants to use his Word to bring light to every one of our minds. God wants to bring light to every single person, every single heart and every single mind.  He wants to light up our minds with the truth of who He is, with the truth of the next step we should take, the next direction to take in our lives, with the truth of how to handle the feelings I’m having, with the truth of how to handle the relationship difficulties or the relationship successes I’m having. He wants to shine his light and the way out of the temptation we are struggling with.  He wants to bring light to our lives through the BIBLE (His Word). That is called "illumination." We'll talk more about this on Sunday.

How does he do that?  How does he turn the light on in our lives?

Some of you may have opened up the Bible and thought, “I’m not getting any light out of that.  It didn’t happen.” Other times it happens immediately.  But more often when the light dawns on you, it comes slowly. 

Psalm 119:99 says “I have more insight than all my teachers for I meditate on your statutes.”  Focus on that word “meditate.”  You notice a lot of verses are from Psalm 119.  It’s not only the longest chapter in the Bible, but it’s also a chapter that’s all about the Bible, so that’s why we look at it a lot.  That reminds us that meditation is the key to turning the light on many times.  Not the type of meditation where you try to clear your mind and go to a happy place. The kind of meditation when you fix, think upon, and strategically focus on God’s Word.

When you soak your mind in the Word. Meditation isn’t losing your mind to the universe; it’s focusing your mind on the Word of God.  All of these are so that God can turn the light on in our lives.  That’s what he wants to do in my life, that’s what he wants to do in our life.

When you soak your mind in the Word, he turns the light on.  He helps you to see things with a different perspective, a different way.  Once that happens, he gives you the opportunity to do something else, Psalm 119:105 says this “Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.”  He turns the light on so that we can have direction in our lives – a lamp for our feet, a light for our path.

When this was first written, the lamp was like a candle in a lamp that they’d carry.  Now we would have a flashlight.  Some of you have like a flashlight on your phone.  So you could read it today, your Word is an app to my feet.  That’s what this is about. God’s Word guides our steps. It shows us which path to take. It makes the path clear, not necessarily easy, but clear.

How does my faith in God’s Word work in practical every day ways?  It’s like a flashlight that I’m holding, a flashlight app that I’m holding.  It gives just enough light for the next few steps.

If I’m holding a flashlight and I’m wanting more light down the path, how do I get more light down the path?  I’ve got to take the next step.  The only way to get more light is for me to take the next step.  There have been so many times in my life when I’ve been stuck waiting for more light from God.  What I want is, “God, could you just light up the whole path, my whole life.  The next twenty miles would be nice so I could see where everything’s going.”  But God says, No, I’m just giving you enough for the next step.  You take that step and then you’re going to get light for the next step.  You take that step then you’ll get light for the next step.

God’s given you just enough light for the next step.  So what’s the next step in your life?

To turn the light on in your life one of the great things you can do is pray prayers, related to God’s Word, related to the Bible.  In fact one of them is our memory verse this week.  Psalm 119:18 “Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in your law.”  There’s a lot of words in the Bible, for the Bible.  We just looked at law, statutes, word, promise – they’re synonymous.  They all mean the same thing.  This is talking about the whole of God’s Word.  “Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in your law.”

The more we read God’s Word, the more clear our path will be. Whether or not we follow the path is a whole other blog and lesson for a whole other time. However, God gives us His Word to illuminate our minds. To shine His light. I pray that you take your NEXT STEP. For many, the next step is daily time reading God’s word. For others it is joining a home group. I pray that you take that next step and watch God illuminate the next one on your journey.
adapted from thoughts from Rick Warren and 40 Days in the Word Campaign

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