My three married sons have chosen wisely, smart women who love God and love their husbands well. Therefore, my grandchildren have wise mothers who limit screen time and access to junk food. Humans, both big and small, develop an appetite, an acquired taste, for what’s-good-for-them when what’s-good-for-them is what they are given.
As readers, we can expect that a steady diet of nothing but Instagram posts, Twitter hot takes, and Netflix fluff will leave us poorly prepared to enjoy more demanding offerings. By contrast, the writer of Psalm 119 just can’t say a word without recommending the sacred text to anyone within earshot because he has found it to be sweetly satisfying:
How sweet are Your words to my taste,Psalm 119:103
Sweeter than honey to my mouth!”
We discover the sweetness of revealed truth by immersing ourselves in its words, and four strategies have helped me develop an appetite for God’s inspired book:
- Do the work.
One of the great fallacies of the Christian life is that reading and studying scripture should be easy. While it’s true that a plain reading of most passages will give the reader all she needs to chew on, it is also true that a regular, daily appointment with the text and deep, repetitive reading with an eye for literary context and the perspective of the original audience helps tremendously–and it can be a lot of work.
- Make time for it.
Elisabeth Elliot famously said, “There is always time to do the will of God.” Obviously, there will be seasons of life that are more challenging, but if the pattern of your life does not allow for time to savor the sweetness of God’s Word, begin asking him for wisdom to make gradual changes.
- Read expectantly.
When my grandchildren are offered a cookie, they savor every bite! When you crack open the pages of Scripture, you are hearing from the God of the universe. Come expecting sweetness and light!
- Find a dependable guide.
Once you’ve done the work yourself, it’s reassuring to check your perceptions with a seasoned reader, and Patsy Burnette has created a hopeful and helpful resource that will take you through the entire Bible as you dig into the sweetness of its truth. Patterned after a chronological reading plan, Sweeter Than Honey offers a few surprises:
For instance, did you know that the book of Job predates Genesis?
Have you ever read the prophetic record in the context of Old Testament historical books?
Patsy’s commentary invites readers into a robust reading of God’s Word with the expectation that they will continue in the spiritual practice for a lifetime. With space to record prayer and reflection along the way, the book becomes a keepsake as well as a resource. Best of all, following the narrative arc of scripture from Genesis to Revelation reveals the beauty of God’s great rescue plan from start to finish.
You’ll develop a taste for what’s good for you as you do the work, make time for spiritual reading, come to the text with expectation, and take advantage of excellent resources that are available.
What’s your next right thing in developing an appetite for reading the Bible?
Holding you in the light,
We discover the sweetness of revealed truth by immersing ourselves in its words. Sweeter than Honey by Patsy Burnette ( @InstaEncourage ) will enhance your appetite for scripture.Tweet
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