“Before him there was no king like him, who turned to the Lord with all his heart, with all his soul, and with all his might, according to all the law of Moses; nor did any like him arise after him.”
Can you recall something that you poured your whole heart, soul and mind into? Something that transformed your life? Parenting or grand-parenting can be transforming. Jobs, careers and hobbies are transforming. Gardening, writing, sports, music, traveling all can be transforming. We all can think of something that we are passionate about or called to do that transforms us.
I confess that I go in phases when it comes to being transformed by God’s Word. I start out strong in a new Bible Study, or hear about a new app that allows me to receive daily reminders and encouragement. My friends show me new books to read and I fill my social media with faithful authors, speakers and artists. I am passionate about that, and put my whole heart, mind and soul into it,… for awhile,… and then I move on to something else.
Wouldn’t it be amazing if I had the stamina to keep at it day after day, year after year?
It’s okay. God forgives me when I fall short.
But even when I fall short, I have not lost what I’ve learned. No education is ever wasted. When I memorized the book of James in a Bible study group a few years ago, I didn’t know what would come of it. I didn’t know how God would use that in my life. But today I know that at specific times, God brings verses of the book of James to my mind.
I know that I can find hope for hard times. “Consider it pure joy when you face trials of many kinds…”
I’m reminded that God has given me every good thing. “Every good and perfect gift comes from above.”
I know that God’s word says I am supposed to take care of the poor and that mercy triumphs over judgment.
I know that the book of James debates which is better, having faith or doing good deeds? “Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds.”
The transformation that happened to my heart when I memorized that book of scripture is with me forever. And though I can’t recall the book of James word for word anymore, I know that I have not lost any of it and it daily shapes my character.
The Word of God transformed King Josiah’s life. He destroyed idols, brought worship back to the temple and commanded the people to celebrate Passover. The Bible transformed his heart and soul and mind to do hard things and to honor God. I’m thankful for the example of King Josiah.
Open our hearts, minds, and souls to the desire to be transformed by your Holy Word. Help us where we fall short. Give us strong examples, like King Josiah, to show us how to honor you. Stay with us and bless us.
In your precious Son’s name,
Written by Julie Anderson