look and look and look

My verse for last month was: “But how can people call for help, if they don’t know who to trust? And how can they know who to trust, if they haven’t heard of the One who can be trusted? And how can they hear, if nobody tells them? And how is anyone going to tell them, unless someone is sent to do it?” (Romans 10:14-15)

After I chose it, it kept coming up “everywhere”, so of course it made me wonder what God was trying to say to me. Although I certainly wish I could talk to my loved ones more about Christ, I think it was more to confirm the things I’m already doing–like Perspectives marking (which would be the “sending” part), as well as helping others learn more about Him (small group and Wednesday kids). Also, perhaps it’s a reminder about things I’d formerly determined to do but have slacked on lately: sharing scripture, using a photo to highlight scripture sometimes, etc. Although, it doesn’t really mean that much to people when they are not open to it (via the Holy Spirit). Maybe that’s not for me to decide, when/if people are open. I know it’s meant a lot to the odd person “here and there” before.

Next! My One Word for this year has been losing interest for me. This often happens when I determine to eat more “fruit”. It lasts for awhile, but then… Of course, my new “obsession” is partly to blame for it, and there’s been a temptation to actually change the One Word to “zero”, or “waste” or something. I’m not the only one! Apparently, that Marketplace episode got to a lot of people. Which is great, because hopefully we’ll start seeing some changes about single use plastic, etc.

But, God always comes through when I ask for guidance. Always! I’ve been reading John Piper’s book about how to read the Bible, and one thing he talks about is spending time looking at a passage vs going through it quickly. Of course, I’ve been doing that for years–reading a few verses over and over again each day, before going on to the next ones. But I’m not sure I wasn’t just enjoying the “turn of phrase”; or as he says, enjoying the “gems” vs seeing the “connections”. He describes how a student (a biology student, and in another case, art students) was instructed to look at something for hours, and as time goes by they see more and more than what they saw at first. In fact, I’ve done this before a few times, when waiting somewhere, or riding in a bus or something. Noting the detail on another passenger’s purse, what shoes they’re wearing, etc. It’s fun!

Now to try this on scripture! Of course, you have to make sure you’re not seeing things that aren’t there. John Piper says you need to ask questions, like “what does the author intend”, etc., and look closely at the grammar, etc. I already find that there’s soooo much wonderfulness in scripture, but this will be fun. And of course, to match my One Word, it has to be the verses about the fruit of the Spirit in Galatians. You can’t just take one or two verses though, the whole context of verses must be considered. So I’m not sure yet exactly which ones will be for memorizing… maybe I’ll find a few!

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