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Ordinary Days

Well, I was going to write a post about why I changed the name of my blog to “Ordinary Days,” but then I stumbled upon this blog post from A God-Man in Christ, and it was everything I wanted to share with you and more.  So instead of writing something completely original, I’ll just point you to a blog that already said what I was going to say.  Please visit agodman.com for the full post (this is just the first three paragraphs)!

“Our Christian life is not a spectacular life, filled with all kind of amazing and out-of-the-ordinary events, but it is a normal daily life under the divine dispensing. The Triune God has been processed and consummated so that in His Divine Trinity He may dispense all that He is into us – and this takes place in a daily way, in a normal way, and even in a fine and detailed way. As we turn to Him here and there, He dispenses Himself into us little by little, day by day, bit by bit, causing us to grow in the divine life in a normal way!

Just as our human life, our Christian life is not filled with spectacular things or extraordinary experiences. On the one hand, from time to time, such experiences may occur, but they are not of a daily occurrence. We shouldn’t expect to have a spectacular time each day in receiving the divine dispensing. We shouldn’t expect spectacular results in our Christian life. Rather, we need to be content and satisfied with ordinary days filled with regular and normal practices in our human life under the divine dispensing!

We love our time in the morning with the Lord – seeking His face, touching Him, spending time with Him in a personal way, and being revived by Him every morning. After such a time – which is not spectacular but is a normal experience in the divine life – we go ahead in our daily life and live our life with its daily routine, activities, to-do’s, etc in the divine dispensing. We go to school, we go to work, we travel, we visit, whatever we do during the day, we live ordinary days in the divine dispensing, receiving the fine and sweet dispensing of the Triune God!”

Recently I’ve been enjoying a song that talks about this, and I’ve been impressed with the fact that my Christian life shouldn’t be something so miraculous that it somehow gets separated from my normal, everyday life.  Yes, especially awesome things may happen every once in a blue moon, but that isn’t the Christian life our God has ordained for us.  Our Christian life is a little by little and day by day life.  Daily getting into the word, singing hymns, and meeting with other believers are just a few ways to live this normal Christian life.  In my own experience, I’ve also enjoyed writing verses on my mirror to help me get ready in the morning and listening to online messages of Christian conferences while I clean my house and do laundry.

Ephesians 5:16 says “Redeeming the time, for the days are evil.”  The footnote in my translation says “I.e., seizing every favorable opportunity.  This is be be wise in our walk (v. 15).”  There are so many small times in my day that could be spent with my precious Savior that I overlook.  Waiting in line, driving, and cooking are just a few examples.  O Lord open our eyes!  We want to seize every favorable opportunity to enjoy You!  To love You!  To gain You!

Here’s the song I mentioned earlier.  You can listen to it here.  (I added the verse references to each verse incase any of you wanted to look it up!)

Little by little (Exo. 23:30) the Lord is cutting off all our natural life.  As we grow in Him He replaces us with more of His life divine.

It is our destiny to live a normal life, in the divine dispensing.
It is a blessing to be satisfied with ordinary days in the divine dispensing.

Day by day (2 Cor. 4:16), our inward parts are being renewed by the Lord. Everyday, fresh and rich supply to us He does afford.

Here a little and there a little (Isa. 28:10) Christ reveals Himself to us.  When we read His word, we are satisfied and we enjoy Him thus.

Morning by morning (Lam. 3:23) Jehovah He is faithful to awaken us.  He instructs our ears, with just a word the weary to sustain we must.

From strength to strength (Psa. 84:7) we’re on the highways to enter into our God. Though Satan opposes we are strengthened to lay hold on more of God.

Grace upon grace (John 1:16) the Triune God is processed for us to enjoy.  The law is over, now we can partake of His supply with grace.

From glory to glory (2 Cor. 3:18) we are in the process of being transformed. Beholding reflecting, to God’s image with all saints we’ll be conformed.

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12 Practical Points on Bible Reading

This is an awesome post from HoldingToTruth.com about how to read the Bible.  The twelve points are divided into three sections as follows:

The proper attitude for reading the Bible

1. Have the attitude of contacting God Himself

2. Have the attitude of coming to receive spiritual nourishment

3. Have the attitude of coming to receive enlightenment

Some simple ways to read the Bible

1. Read the books of the Bible sequentially

2. Don’t read too much at one time

3. Blend reading of the Word with prayer

4. Underline precious verses

5. Don’t seek too much understanding

6. Muse on the Word

Some tips on time

1. The best time to read the Bible is in the morning

2. It is best to read the New Testament in the morning

3. Try to set apart at least ten minutes at a time

 

I highly recommend you go to the actual blog post itself, because there you’ll find lots of helpful verses and extra commentary for each of the twelve points.

Do any of you have any other tips for reading the Bible?

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A Stable Christian Life

Last night right before I went to bed I remembered that I hadn’t read the New Testament all day.  I knocked out the Old Testament in the morning, but put off the New.  It was late and I was tired, so the idea of not reading quickly came to mind.  But almost as soon as the thought of abandoning the Bible came to me, another thought came in.  “Why would I do that?  The Bible’s my rock.  It’s the basis of my Christian life and everything I believe.  I think I can sacrifice a few minutes of sleep for one chapter.”

This is not a new predicament, or one that is exclusive to myself.  Everyday Christians around the world have to fight to get into the word.  Whether they’re fighting culture, apathy, governments, etc., there is always a struggle to get into the Bible.  A lot of Christians think it’s unnecessary for them to read the Bible.  “I won’t understand it anyway, so why waste my time.  I’ll just go to church or watch church on T.V. and let someone else explain it to me.”  This is something I hear a lot, and have been tempted to indulge in myself.

In 2008 I went to a sort of Christian training for college students.  The topic was the book of Philippians, and something one of the brothers said came to me last night.  He told us that “Without the Word of God to go along with the bountiful supply of the Spirit, our Christian life can be unstable…. The Word never changes and is always the same, so it can stabilize our Christian life.”

Isn’t this good?  I’m so unstable and constantly fluctuating.  One minute I’m praising the Lord and the next I’m completely immersed in the world and my own problems to the point that I forget about God and focus on my pitiful self.

There’s a parable in Matthew 7:24-27 that portrays my situation perfectly:

“Everyone therefore who hears these words of Mine and does them shall be likened to a prudent man who built his house upon the rock.  And the rain descended, and the rivers came, and the winds blew, and they beat against that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock.  And everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not do them shall be likened to a foolish man who built his house upon the sand.  And the rain descended, and the rivers came, and the winds blew, and they dashed against that house; and it fell, and its fall was great.”

The translation I’m using has fantastic footnotes.  I want to share two of them here, one for the word “rock” and the other for the word “sand”.

Rock – “Rock does not refer to Christ but to His wise word, the word that reveals the will of His Father who is in the heavens.  The living and work of the kingdom people must be founded on the word of the new King for the accomplishing of the will of the heavenly Father.  This is to enter in through the narrow gate and walk the constricted way that leads to life.”

Sand – “Sand refers to human concepts and natural ways.  If we live and work according to our human concepts and natural ways, our living and work will be founded on sinking sand.  This is to enter in through the wide gate and walk the broad way that leads to destruction.”

This is so true.  Without the word of God, all we’re left with is our own ideas of how to live a proper Christian life.  We may look to other people and philosophies, but how we apply what we see and appreciate in those people and philosophies still depend on our “human concepts and natural ways.”  But even though certain traditions and ideologies may look solid and trustworthy on the surface, they’re really just sinking sand with no support.  The only way to really have a stable Christian life is to read the “wise word” of God.  People and philosophies come and go, but the Bible is constant and unchanging.  There is no other way to know the Father’s will or receive the grace needed to walk the narrow and constricted way.  So which do you want?  A house that is stable and strong, or a house that can fall with a change in the wind?  Oh Lord!  Keep us all in Your wise word!

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“Your words were found…”

The famous Greek word logos — “word, speech, a...

I’ve recently been enjoying verse 16 from Jeremiah chapter 15.

“Your words were found and I ate them,

And Your word became to me

The gladness and joy of my heart,

For I am called by Your name,

O Jehovah, God of hosts.”

What a wonderful verse.  Did you know that such a verse existed was in the Bible??  A verse that tells us to eat God’s word??  But it does!  When some of my friends in Christians on Campus first pointed out this verse, and verses like it, my concept

of the Bible completely changed.  Suddenly, it went from being boring and hard to understand, to still sometimes boring and still hard to understand, but eatable as well.  But not even just eatable, but joy-infusingly eatable.  How in the world is this possible?  Let me share with you a footnote on this verse from the translation I’m using:

“According to the entire revelation in the Holy Bible, God’s words are good for us to eat, and we need to eat them.  God’s word is the divine supply as food to nourish us.  Through the word as our food, God dispenses His riches into our inner being to nourish us that we may be constituted with His element.  This is a crucial aspect of God’s economy.  When we eat Gods words, His word becomes our heart’s gladness and joy.”  For example, Psalm 119:103 says:

“How sweet are Your words to my taste!

Sweeter than honey to my mouth!”

Matthew 4:4 is a well-known verse among Christians on this topic.

“But He answered and said, It is written, ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out through the mouth of God.'”

Now, in Greek, there are two different ways to say ‘word’.  Logos refers to the constant word, like the Bible.  While rhema refers to the instant word, like when the Lord speaks something specific to us in our prayer.  In this particular verse, the word is rhema.  This means that as a Christian, we need to pay attention to God’s personal and instant speaking to us.  Otherwise, we won’t make it.  We can’t live the Christian life without some real contact with God.

1 Peter 2:2 is a good example of a verse using logos.

“As newborn babes, long for the guileless milk of the word in order that by it you may grow unto salvation.”

Here, we see that the constant word, or the Bible, is likened to food.  This means we can eat it!  However, as we grow in Christ, we should move on from milk to solid food as in 1 Corinthians 3:2.

Now that we know we can take in the Lord’s instant and constant words as spiritual nourishment, but how exactly do we go about doing it?  Well, Ephesians 6:17-18 are helpful:

“And receive the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which Spirit is the word of God, by all means of prayer and petition, praying at every time in spirit and watching unto this in all perseverance and petition concerning all the saints.”

Aha!  So, in order to receive the word of God into us, we need to pray over it.  Martin Luther once said “It is very certain, that we cannot attain to the understanding of Scripture either by study or by the intellect. Your first duty is to begin by prayer.”

There is a wonderful little book on this topic that is almost entirely composed of quotes, including the one above, from Christians throughout the ages and across denominations who have discovered the benefits of praying over the words of the Bible.  It’s called “Lord Thou saidst…” compiled by Ray Graver and I highly recommend it.

Anyway, I hope you find the joy that is hidden in the word of God and let it become “sweeter than honey” to your mouth!

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5 Verses on the Comfort of God

Psalm 46:1-3 

“God is our refuge and strength; A help in distress, He is most readily found.

Therefore we will not fear, Though the earth change, And the mountains slip into the heart of the seas;

Though the waters of the sea roar and foam;”

Psalm 18:2

“Jehovah is my crag and my fortress and my Deliverer; My God, my rock, in whom I take refuge; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my high retreat.”

Nahum 1:7

“Jehovah is good, a stronghold in a day of distress; And He knows those who take refuge in Him.”

2 Corinthians 1:3-5

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassions and God of all comfort;

Who comforts us in all our affliction that we may be able to comfort those who are in every affliction through the comforting with which we ourselves are comforted by God.

For even as the sufferings of the Christ abound unto us, so through the Christ our comfort also abounds.”

2 Thessalonians 2:16

“Now the Lord Jesus Christ Himself and God our Father, who has loved us and given us eternal comfort and good hope in grace”

Don’t see your favorite?  Tell me in the comments!

Added by you guys:

1 Corinthians 1:3

“Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.”

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