I had been praying for God to give me the next message that he wanted me to share in my blog. Nothing was coming. One night in the early morning hours I woke up and this is the message I received. Now to me it is a simple message we all know so well, but I am thinking if God gave it to me some body needs a reminder to hear it again.
I own and operate a car. When I got my car it was brand new. It had some additional (not like the cars today) bells and whistles on it that I was not used to. Now I can honestly say I have never read that book from front to back. I can honestly say I don’t know what all is in the manual. I am betting there is useful information though. In order to learn how to operate my car I would have to go to the owner’s manual and read on the thing that I didn’t understand about my car. One of the things we couldn’t figure out was how to set the time on the clock so my husband and I got out the manual and began reading it to see how to set the clock. With that done we put the manual back in the glove box until the next time we needed it. So, as you can see I have read bits and pieces of the manual. I have read just what I needed to help me with a problem I am having. My car is four years old. When is the last time I had the manual out reading about my car you might ask? Not for a long time.
God has reminded me he has given us a manual to follow. It’s called the Bible. The Bible has some useful information in it. The creator of my car felt it was necessary for me to have this information so I can drive in a safe and productive manual. It gives me useful tips on how to keep my car working properly. Men or women sat down at a computer and worked on this manual to get it right. There probably was some editing done and rewriting until they got it like they wanted it. God who is my creator felt it was necessary for me to have a manual if I was going to live successfully for him. He used Disciples and many Godly men and women in the Bible to tell their stories so I may have examples to follow. Many people have had a help in getting this manual written the way God wanted it written. 2 Timothy 3:16 tells us this; “All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.” If I want to live my life for God, if I want to know what he wants to teach me, if I want to figure out what’s wrong with my life then I need to get my manual out and read it.
I have found when reading the owner’s manual I have picked a certain section to read, but when I read that section it didn’t make sense. I had to go back several paragraphs or pages to fully understand what I needed to know. It’s the same way in the Bible. Picking just a chapter or a few short verses may not always give us the whole picture or help us to understand the situation fully. We can’t always pick and choose what we want to read. We may not be getting the whole picture of what God or the authors are trying to tell us.
Now understand I can operate my car fine without having read any of my owner’s manual. It is not imperative (although I am sure the writers think it is) to read the manual in order to drive my car. But, if I want to get the most out of my car, if I want to operate it properly then it is necessary for me to read and understand it to the best of my ability.
I don’t have to read the Bible to proclaim I am a Christian. Again, though if I want to live for God in a Godly manner than I must follow the manual and learn to live by it; not reading bits and pieces but the whole thing. I must work to understand those things I don’t always understand by seeking the advice of others and praying for wisdom from God.
Just reading the manual and not putting into action those things I have read does not make my car run better. If I read in the manual that I need to change the oil in my car every so many miles but I don’t do it, it’s not going to make my car run as well as if I change the oil when it tells me to. If we don’t apply those commandments that God has given us we won’t function as well as Christians. If we don’t apply those truths found in the Bible then we won’t get the results that we desire.
Finally, unlike what I do with my owner’s manual I need to get my Bible out and read it daily. I need to know daily how I am to live my life in order to function to the best of my ability. I am positive if I read my car’s owner manual maybe I could make the car last longer and run more efficiently, but I don’t. I know I need to read my Bible daily so I can function more efficiently and be more effectively.
When is the last time you have opened your Bible? I just put something up on my Facebook page that says this, “Don’t’ say God has been silent when your Bible has been closed.” If you want God to speak to you open your Bible. He has a lot to say.
Dear God: You have given me an owner’s manual. You don’t open it for me. Remind me just like the car’s owner manual it has some good and useful information in it. I am reminded that in order to be effective and in order to live a Godly life I need to read this manual on a daily basis being in prayer and asking for wisdom as I read it. Guide me as I strive to read daily your word. Thank you for giving us your word through those who were obedient in listening to you and willing to share it with us today. Amen