As I was doing a Bible study the other day, I had two browsers open. I had my favorite commentaries open in one browser, in a second, I had the Bible open. For studying the Bible, I was “in the zone,” dissecting each word, each sentence, ferreting out all the “manna” I could find in the Words of God. Quite suddenly, I became aware that I should pause and pray.
What About Me
As I prayed, a salient thought rose above my cluttered mind. It was as if the Holy Spirit said, “What about me?” I was blindsided by that thought. My intent was to gain the Holy Spirit’s meaning that He had placed, through inspiration, in the authors of the books in the Bible. Still, I was keenly aware that I needed to stop and ponder this question: What about the Holy Spirit?
Letting my Bible study drift away, I prayed and asked the Spirit of God to help me answer His question. That’s when, with clarity, the thought came to me: “You consult all your friend, but not me.” That shook me.
I Love My Friends
These Bible commentaries have become my friends. I often consult them, and I know the ones that challenge each other. “Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another. (Proverbs 27:17)” Their disagreements often serve to help me understand. But God was telling me that I ask my friends to comment on God’s Word, but I leave little to the Holy Spirit.
I quickly recalled, “Make every effort to present yourself approved to God, an unashamed workman who accurately handles the word of truth. (2 Timothy 2:15)” Wasn’t the point of Bible study to study? Now I just felt dumb. Learning about someone is never as complete as meeting someone and being taken into their sphere.
It’s Better to “Be With” Than to “Read About”
I could study for days about the apostle John, but how much more impactful it would be if I met him, talked with him, and he took me into his life? What I was doing with the Holy Spirit was having a time of study, but little time with Him.
Of course, I pray as I study, but the rut I’d fallen into was to ask my friends what the Holy Spirit meant without pushing my chair back and meditate upon God’s Word.
Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do.Joshua 1:8
Study We Must
I was missing the best part! Yes, I should study, I should search the Scriptures, I should consult my friends, but I must not stop there. I wasn’t pondering God’s Word in quiet and reverence. I wasn’t giving the Holy Spirit an opportunity to open my understanding. It is in the quiet where we hear God the loudest.
“Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!”Psalms 46:10
Just three words – “What about me” – and I was ashamed of myself. It wasn’t that I should forsake my friends, it was that I should remember that those Bible study tools are there to prepare my heart to receive God.
You may like: It Matters