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Friday, April 11, 2014

I haven't read books for the last year...

I haven't read any books for the last year other than the Bible.  Nothing against books, I just wanted to follow an inner nudge.

About this time last year in the Easter Season, I remember having a stack of books by my bed and I was being given books almost every week by people eager to introduce me to another line of thought.  I love reading, so the problem wasn't my lack of desire to read, it was the glut of reading that was crowding out my time in the Word.  Beyond that, I felt like I was getting used to people's interpretations of life, people and God instead of letting the Word speak for itself and forming my own thoughts rooted  in my own interpretation based on God's Spirit illuminating my heart.

This has been especially life-altering in the realm of sermon preparation.  I haven't read commentaries or gotten ideas from books or articles or blogs and fleshed them out into messages for church. (I'm not saying this is bad--it's not--or that I won't return to a more balanced approach of research and cross-referencing.)  I just needed this last year to be a season of fasting from man's commentary on God.  It comes so fast and furious it almost crowds out the need to do your own work and come to your own conclusions and convictions.  There is a danger of living in an isolated interpretation of Scripture which can lead to a rogue reading of God's Word, but there is also a danger in not digging deep yourself asking God to reveal Himself as you soak in the Scriptures and let them seep into the secret places of your soul.

I've found God's Word to be self-sufficient, self-evident, and self-satisfying.  I'm not going to lie, there are seasons I'd rather read books about God than the book of God.  I have been more satisfied in the musings of man and the word-smithing of great authors than God's authorship and authority.  I needed to reestablish the primacy of His Word and Voice as the sole author and authority of my life and leadership.

I can't tell you how much I needed this year of centering to align my heart and to regulate my theological and spiritual equilibrium.  With that said, I'm looking forward to reading some books again with a new lens of learning.  I certainly need to wisdom of others speaking into me so that my interpretation isn't ingrown and malnourished.  I miss the reflective thoughts of man, but that is all they are...reflective.  They are only a reflective light of the source of light and I never want to confuse the moon for the sun.

Here's to the supremacy and sufficiency of God's Word.

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