The Power of Routine
Why read the Bible? That’s actually a fascinating question to consider. The Bible has been a bestseller for centuries. Almost all of us (89% of Americans) own one or more Bibles. Yet many of us feel we don’t know the book terribly well, the many stories of scripture that have shaped our faith tradition. According to Lifeway Research, 20 percent of us have read the entire Bible at least once. Some 15 percent claim to have read half of the Bible and 30 percent have read just a few passages or stories. The Bible is really a library, a collection of material written over the course of 1500 years by dozens of different authors. It contains such a wide variety of literature and reflects so deeply the human struggle to understand God and be faithful.
We might read the Bible because it is a book that continues to form our lives and our civilization. Perhaps another reason to read the Bible is that it asks us to look at ourselves. We often find ourselves in its pages and stories, but only if we have the chance to engage with it and ponder its words. When we are hurting, we cry out with the Psalmist, “How long, O Lord?” Or maybe when we’re feeling God is distant, we echo Jesus’ words on the cross, “My God, why have you abandoned me?” Often the Bible questions our moral fiber when we hear the ten commandments or the words of the prophet Micah who reminds us what God requires of us: “To do justice, to love kindness, to walk humbly with God.” Or perhaps when we’re fearful or need more strength in our lives, we hear Jesus saying to us, “Come to me all you who are weary and heavy laden and I will give you rest.”
We’ll be talking the next few weeks in worship about the spiritual routines in our lives. They can encourage us, by building something positive within us. Cultivating habits like these are powerful and can make it easier for us to turn to God as our source of faith and strength. A good spiritual routine can cause us to pause and wonder, “What is God trying to say to me here?” Sunday we’ll talk about the routine of reading the Bible and some ways you might start a spiritual practice that will strengthen your faith.
Dave Summers, PhD
602-840-8360 Ext 131
“We invite you to join us on a shared journey of life and faith, open to all, regardless of age, ability, economics, color, race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, politics, theology or anything else that might separate us from each other. Whoever you are and wherever you may be on your spiritual journey, you’re invited to walk with Christ in community with all of God’s children, and embrace the endless possibilities of God’s unconditional love.”