My friend flipped seamlessly from Scripture reference to Scripture reference and read them on the spot.
I chose to take notes and jot down the list, confident I would go back and read them later.
We sat in the same church service, listened to the same sermon, but chose to engage with it differently. Both are good ways to listen and learn. Neither option is right or wrong.
After the service, my friend referenced the various Scripture passages and how they connected to the sermon and other related experiences.
I enjoyed learning about the connections and how the pastor’s train of thought moved. I wondered where my mind would go when I reread the notes and looked up each verse.
Two more Sundays have passed since that sermon, and I still haven’t read through those supplementary Scripture passages.
Will I really go back and read through them?
Focus on familiar
I can’t say, but lately I have noticed a tendency on my part to skip over familiar Scripture referenced as additional resources to the focal passage.
It’s not that I’ve been dismissing or deliberately ignoring them. I merely got in a habit of not looking up the ones I already knew.
However, by doing this I have been missing the opportunity to read the passages in the context of the topic being outlined. I’m also missing the opportunity to grow in Christ.
God speaks to us fresh every day through His word, even the parts we read frequently, and it can happen with a random Scripture reference as well as during our Bible study.
So as Scripture passages catch our eye throughout the day, what if we paused for those few seconds to read them and reflect?
What breadcrumbs might we follow as we collect each verse?
Would the practice provide an extra barrier of protection from distractions and discouragement?
Could it help us keep our eyes on Jesus?
Meditate on message
Consider meditating on every verse you see or hear each day, no matter how you find them.
Take a minute to look up the passage and read through it slowly, looking for what God might be saying to you in that moment.
You might notice a Scripture reference in an email signature line or in the text of a note from a friend. You might see it on a billboard or hear it on a podcast.
And as far as what you might find while reading The Alabama Baptist each week — I suggest preparing an extra cup of coffee or snack before tackling them.
We don’t have a protocol or formula, but Scripture appears consistently in the stories we tell, resources listed and services promoted — and of course you’ll find lots in the Sunday School lesson commentaries and the crossword puzzle.
Enjoy the journey as you explore messages from the Lord.
Scripture passages about meditating on God’s word; what are others you would like to share with us?
“And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart.” —Deuteronomy 6:6
“Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked … but whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on His law day and night.
“That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither — whatever they do prospers.
“Not so the wicked! They are like chaff that the wind blows away. …
“For the Lord watches over the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked leads to destruction.” —Psalm 1
“I have hidden Your word in my heart that I might not sin against You.” —Psalm 119:11
“This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it … .” —Joshua 1:8
“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.” —Colossians 3:16