1 Sep 2001

The Bible or the obsession?

Submitted by theshovel
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Heather, thanks for sharing your heart. The openness is refreshing. :)

Last night when I went to bed I looked at my bible and realized I haven't been obsessively reading it.

Obsessively. That's a good word to describe perhaps most of the Bible reading that takes place most of the time. The lack of obsession sounds like real freedom to me.

In fact I think I haven't even picked it up in 4 days. Truth was I didn't feel like reading it, but then I felt kind of paniced like, my resting in his grace was leading me to not read my bible,

What is it that you haven't picked up in 4 days, the Bible or the Obsession? Or are the they almost sewn together in your perceptions?

I remember an old ad campaign that went something like, "A day with Florida orange juice is like a day without sunshine". Well, I'm a Floridian and I rarely drink Florida orange juice ... and yet the sun still shines for me - from the inside! The simple fact of the matter is that a day without Florida orange juice is merely a day without Florida orange juice.

Now a day without obsessive Bible reading is freedom, but a day without Bible reading is merely a day without Bible reading. Since you don't FEEL like reading it seems to indicate that it is the whole concept of a law-driven bondage that you have no desire for. Ah, yes! Resting in His grace might easily steer you clear of a law-bound obsession!! And the panic? Panic doesn't come from rest, but from a striving according to the flesh.

and then I had the horrific thought that I hadn't even really been talking to the Lord this week. So then I started to question if I could personally just live and no for sure that He would have his will done in my life or if I'd just basically go off and suit myself.

Once again, is it talking to the Lord or a PERCEPTION of talking to the Lord that you are becoming aware of here? Believe me, I know that fear. For me, there was a pattern that became familiar by which I judged my communication with God. As the familiar became irrelevant I was left with the sense of a void because my measuring stick was still telling my fleshly perceptions that I was missing something. The fact is that my fleshly perceptions ALWAYS suggested that I was missing something, but I had a few formulas that kept me thinking that since I was doing what I could (yeah, right!) that I was not falling off the charts anywhere.

Rest assured that the Spirit within you KNOWS how to communicate with the Father because otherwise you and I haven't a clue!! And consider the fact that if you could give a drink of water "to the least of these my brethren" and really be giving it to Christ, then is it at all possible that if you communicate to "the least of these my brethren" that you may actually be communicating with the Father? Hmmmm? :)

I'm afraid that if I don't pick it up each day, that I will drift off into doing my own thing and maybe even ignore God.

Knowing where you're coming from with a similar urge to read the Bible obsessively I would be a little more concerned about ignoring God and doing my own thing by picking it up each day!! :)

To choose to spend a time each day consciously worshiping him.

But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshippers. John 4:23

HE sought and FOUND those true worshippers. The true worshipers are not those who do the best job at worshiping. The woman Jesus spoke to at the well was raised with a PERCEPTION of worship by which she understood the mechanics of how to do it. According to her people they had the right place, which I'm sure included all the right formalities. To HER, worship was a structured thing by which she could know if and when worship was taking place. But Jesus came into her life, and as he spoke to her, he by-passed EVERYTHING by which she thought she understood worship. He removed every physical measurement of worship in this:

God is spirit; and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth. John 4:24

Our worship of the Father has nothing to do with a place or a posture or a speaking or a book or a song, etc, but it has everything to do with the treasure that has been put within us. Our worshiping comes from within and it touches on EVERYTHING in our life. We do not produce this worship for it is the miraculous reality of the fact that His life is within us. It is the reason we begin to notice that for us HE is in everything that goes on. Sometimes we verbally testify of this wonder, sometimes it's in total silence. Sometimes it shows up in what we do or how we think or how we talk to one another. Sometimes it can even happen at a scheduled time. :)

Love,
Jim

I made a Shoveletter out of this correspondence: Obsession

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Random Shovelquote: Life-giving Spirit (view all shovelquotes)

The Spirit is ACTIVE. We were saved FROM a life of TRYING to gain the sense of doing something important, and INTO a life where the LIFE-GIVING Spirit is the empowerment of our lives.   source