So for now, I am going to write just words. Imagine that...
I am trying to read through the Bible this year. Well, most of it. I got a late start, so I know I won't finish the whole thing. You see, my Mom has read through the Bible, every verse, almost every year of my life. Over the last few years she has been using a set-up called The One Year Bible (the link is a MUCH newer version). It breaks it down every day into Old Testament, New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs.
After multiple years of reading through it, often as a team with my Dad, it literally fell apart. It is in three pieces right now. So, my parents decided to move on to another reading ritual this year.
Which afforded the perfect opportunity for me to swoop in and carry off the abandoned, yet much loved, Bible.
Since it is in three pieces, I don't have to carry the whole thing with me all the time. I figure since it is only April, I don't need to worry with the last half of the year yet. It sits on the bedside table for now. I didn't "steal" it until I was home for Easter, so I missed the first three months of the year. Obviously, I am not going to make it through the entire Bible that way, since I missed Genesis through Deuteronomy, Matthew, Mark and a portion of Luke, as well as the first 80 or so Psalms and multiple chapters of Proverbs.
But, I love having it all laid out for me. It has been at least two, maybe three years since I read the Bible cover to cover. As my Mom pointed out to me when I told her I was taking this one after Easter, even after 50 years of reading the Bible, she still finds new things. I LOVE to see what He is going to reveal, just by the simple obedience of opening it up and reading.
Joshua hasn't really been that exciting. So and so received this land, and so and so fought for that land, and the border ran from the rock shaped like a goat to the river that gurgled, etc etc etc.
BUT, one thing I found absolutely amazing was this promise that Joshua gave near the end of his time as leader - "And I have divided to you the land of the nations yet unconquered as well as the land of those you have already destroyed. All the land from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea shall be yours, for the Lord your God will drive out all the people living there now, and you will live there instead, just as he has promised you." Joshua 23:5
Did you read that... He divided the land, doled it out, promised to individual tribes, even that which was yet UNCONQUERED. That took faith. Joshua had that faith. He didn't say, "when you win these battles", then you should share this land equally, or divide it this way, or whatever. He said - God will drive out the people living there, and you will live there instead.
He didn't say tomorrow. He didn't even say during his lifetime... but he had faith, and he divided the land.
Here's another verse God pointed out this week. In the Psalms, David seems to either praise, or complain. He is often pouring out beautiful poetry of praise. Heartfelt, flowing, amazing. Other times he is pouring out his fears, and stresses, and, let's face it, complaints that he isn't getting what he wanted. But still, heartfelt. I think we can all relate to the Psalms, because they are so very emotional.
I read one this week that was a lot of complaining. My enemies hate me. My friends have deserted me. Will you hide yourself from me forever? But then, after all the complaining, David says, "And yet- blessed be the Lord forever! Amen and amen!" Psalm 89:52
He knew, as we should, that no matter what, we should praise. God gladly listens to our complaints when we don't get our way. He understands our pain. But, He still deserves our praise. No Matter What.
I am so glad that we have God's Word.