Psalm 42:1-2 As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God?
When I read the verse above, I envision a sweet little deer, thirstily yet calmly wandering around the lush, green forest in her search for water. But the word “pant” really isn’t a subtle, gentle description of thirsting.
The actual definition of “pant” is this: to breathe hard and quickly, as after exertion; to gasp, as for air; to long with breathless or intense eagerness; to yearn: to throb or heave violently or rapidly.
All-righty then…….that mental picture of panting doesn’t look all that serene. Yet, that is exactly the type of thirst that God wants us to have for Him. Such an insatiable longing for His Word, that when we wake up in the mornings, we immediately head to the Bible instead of the coffee pot. A desire so strong for a glimpse of Him, that our heart palpitates in anticipation, unable to calm until a dose of scripture soothes it. A yearning to hear from God that is so intense, that we find ourselves almost breathless until we drop to our knees, eagerly opening up a conversation with Him.
It’s hard to imagine really feeling that way about God’s Word or prayer, isn’t it? Especially when we know that a normal morning involves hitting the snooze one too many times, spastically jumping out of bed, running around like a chicken with our head cut off trying to get ourselves and all the kids ready to leave, and then trying to refrain from exhibiting signs of road rage on the way to our destination.
What comfort to know that Jesus understands that life is busy. He sees our crazy routines and feels the weight of our emotional and physical obligations. And He patiently waits for us to find time to meet with Him, without judgement or frustration or anger. Maybe He feels a little sadness, because He knows He holds the soothing balm that our soul needs, but He is ready to offer it when we are ready to receive it.
So how do we make time with Jesus a priority, when life is stressful, chaotic, busy and pressed for time? How do we force ourselves to have the motivation to get into God’s Word and make it a priority? And how do we even know where to start? Do we just open the Bible to a random page and hope that is the page we need to be on? Do we just start reading at Genesis 1 and go through Revelation and pray that God gives us the fortitude to trudge through it?
Maybe you have asked yourself those questions before, because these were certainly the questions that were in my mind a few years ago when I knew I needed to be better at reading God’s Word, but I honestly felt perplexed at how to do it.
Then I came across the One Year Chronological Bible, and God’s Word came alive in my heart. I could read God’s story, from the Old Testament to the New Testament, in the order it actually happened. Like a great novel that’s hard to put down. It made sense and it was exciting…… and it soothed the thirst in my soul that had been there for so long.
The daily readings were perfectly organized into 365 days to help people like me – who are easily distracted with life and chaos – stay on track. And each day I recorded the answers to these few questions in a journal:
1. Is there a promise to believe in this passage?
2. Is there a sin to avoid?
3. Is there some new nuggets of truth about God to learn?
4. Is there a timeless principle to apply to my life?
5. How should I pray in regards to this scripture?
6. What does this scripture mean to me today, at this season in my life?
If we truly desire to make God’s Word more of a priority in life, rather than settling for a few spiritual crumbs occasionally when we get really hungry or desperate (as mentioned in my Proverbs 31 Devotion today titled More Than Crumbs), then this might be a great way for you to begin quenching your thirst for Jesus.
Maybe you haven’t even been aware of how spiritual thirsty you are, but once you begin drinking from the Spring of Life, I promise that you will experience life in a brand new, fulfilled, and thirst quenched way.
2 GREAT GIVEAWAYS ARE UP FOR GRABS TODAY!!
1. As promised in today’s P31 devotion, I am giving away an MP3 of my one hour message called Staying Afloat in A Sea of Stress. To enter to win, just leave a comment here on my blog with your favorite scripture that soothes your soul. Winner will be announced on my blog on Friday so be sure to check back, or subscribe to my blog to receive updates!
2. You may also want to consider entering my “What I’m Most Thankful For” Contest! This prize package is worth $60 and includes 2 copies of my new book Stressed-Less Living, 2 Stressed-Less Living Companion Journals, a package of pumpkin flavored coffee, and a couple cute Thanksgiving decorations.
Below is how you enter:
* Post a photo of something you are most thankful for on the Stressed-Less Living Facebook page, and type a quick comment about why you are thankful for that.
* Invite your friends and family members to hop over to the page and “LIKE” your photo. And the photo with the most “LIKES” automatically wins the prize!
* Optional: LIKE the Stressed-Less Facebook page to get daily stress tips, motivational quotes and scriptures verses, and invite your friends to LIKE it too!
(deadline to enter is November 23rd, winner announced November 26th!)
(PLEASE NOTE: WHEN YOU POST YOUR PHOTO ON THE FAN PAGE – IT WILL APPEAR IN A LIST OF RECENT POSTS, AVAILABLE FOR VIEWING WHEN YOU CLICK ON THAT LIST. THE PHOTO WILL NOT STAY UP IN FULL SIZE FORM AFTER POSTING, BUT IT’S THERE!)
If you are interested in purchasing a copy of Stressed-Less Living: Finding God’s Peace In Your Chaotic World for you or a friend, CLICK HERE.