Monday, January 9, 2012

Christmas dishes are meant to be used, and so is your Bible...

I've come a long way in these last ten years of parenting. So far, that as I was packing up Christmas decorations, Tess was aloud to have one last tea party with my Christmas dishes.

That's far, folks. Deep breath.

You see, I used to save nice dishes for when guests were over. When I really wanted to impress someone. But most of the time, I would display them in the hutch as part of the holiday decor, but would rarely use them. In fact, I usually ended up dusting them more than someone actually ate from them. Wait, I forgot that I don't dust in December. Heh. But if I did dust, they would certainly need it. They were used so rarely that sometimes I would even forget about them entirely.

But having kids conveniently, eventually does something for most of us parents and our view of material things. Mostly because nothing in our homes can ever be held sacred again after a two year old has crossed it's path. What once was organized and well taken care of suddenly begins to resemble those second rate items in a furniture store: once lovely and highly desired, but now residing in the scratch and dent aisle in the very back of the warehouse.

Only my stuff is a little stickier.

As I think about the new year, I don't want my Bible to become like my Christmas dishes. Out for display, but never used practically for it's intended purpose. I don't want to only pull it out when I have guests over, or when I really want to impress someone with just the right words, or wait until (gasp) a church service to find it useful. If I'm not intentional in it's use, it will sit in the same spot long enough to collect dust, and I'll pass over it just like I do other nic-nacs that sit around my house. An item that's nice to have, but never truly taken down and enjoyed.

Let's be honest, I've been on again and off again in my Bible reading plenty of times before, and I've had enough time to learn my lesson. I need it daily. Yes, daily. Not because I'm some legalistic rule-follower, but because I'm messed up enough that I need Jesus every minute of every day. And His Word is His voice calling out to me, showing me the way.

I have a plan for the new year. I know myself well enough to know that no plan means no follow-through. I'm keeping it simple or otherwise I'll fail. It doesn't require childcare or money, and I don't even have to get out of my pajamas if I don't want to. Just a small commitment of a few minutes each morning. And you'll never believe it, but someone has already done all of the preparation for me. I just have to be obedient.

And get a little help from my friends.

I'll fill you in on my little secret tomorrow. And I'm praying that you'll consider joining me!

One thing I do know... I've never enjoyed my Christmas dishes more.

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing." John 15:5

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