When I was sixteen-years old, I stopped having my period for about five months. I didn’t know what was going on. I had never been intimate with anyone; and instead of seeking guidance, I tucked away my problem and lived in fear. In my ignorance, I could only think of the Virgin Mary, and I became trapped in a warped, religious thought process that filled me with guilt and anxiety. I didn’t know much about the Bible, but what little I did know, I applied to my situation and came up with ridiculous conclusions.
When my period finally started again, it literally felt like the world was lifted from my teenage shoulders. The entire incident was tucked away into the pockets of my heart and forgotten about it.
Just recently, I was discussing jogging with a friend of mine who teaches kinesiology at our local university. She was training for a marathon and talked about some of the effects of training – one of which was loss of period. Finally, after fifteen years, I discovered why mine had disappeared for five months. I had been on the track team that semester. What a revelation! Something which had caused me so much grief as a teenager had such an easy explanation.
The story is laughable now, but it doesn’t erase the misery I lived in all those months. I realized that my ignorance had caused so much grief. If I had only sought counsel, I could have saved myself from immense confusion – confusion that involved the Bible.
Sometimes as Christians we take our limited exposure to the Bible and apply it to our situations or, worse yet, to our friends’ situations. If we are not reading and studying God’s Word on a regular basis, our ignorance can cause damage to ourselves and to others. Moreover, if we do not seek the guidance of the Holy Spirit and surround ourselves with godly influences, we will be isolated in a confusing world of religious traditions and biblical fragments.
As Christians, we are commanded by God to write His Word on the tablets of our hearts (Proverbs 7:2-3 NIV). God doesn’t command this because He wants us to jump through religious hoops in order to be worthy of His favor; He commands this because He knows that only with His Word in our hearts will we be able to stand firm in our faith (Matthew 7:22-25 NIV).
When we write the Scriptures on our hearts, we are better able to overcome temptation, negative thoughts, low self-esteem, depression, and any other struggle we face. The Bible is our sword against the enemy whose only ambition is to destroy us (1 Peter 5:8 NIV). Also, if we are rooted in God’s Word, we can be a blessing to others. We can come along side our Christian brothers and sisters during their time of need and point them to Christ. The best way to bring someone closer to Christ is by using the anointed Word of God.
We become a more effective mouthpiece for God when we sit down with Him and study His Word. In the Old Testament book of Jeremiah, God reprimands the false prophets who led the people away from Him. God said that if only they would have spent time with Him, they would have proclaimed His Words and the people would have been saved (Jeremiah 23:22 NIV). We can’t be expected to help others align their lives to God’s will if we are not reading the Bible. We won’t even be able to help ourselves because our ignorance will keep us smothered in shame, confusion, and hopelessness.
The Bible is filled with amazing promises that are woven throughout every story. We need to diligently seek those promises so that we can claim them! King David compares God’s Word to honey (Psalm 119:102-104 NIV) and to silver and gold (Psalm 119:72 NIV). We need to cling to the Bible like it’s the most valuable thing we own because it is! Without it, we are lost in a world of darkness. And if we as Christians are lost, who will be the light that shines on the cross for those who are seeking a savior?
Will you make it your determined purpose to know God more (Philippians 3:10 AMP)? Will you join me at making an exerted effort to read your Bible regularly and allow God to teach you? It might seem confusing at first, but God will meet you right where you are. The Holy Spirit is the Supreme Teacher. God wants to fill you with His promises. He wants you to have abundant life (John 10:10 NKJV). He will teach you if you yield to His guidance.
Let us no longer be tied to our ignorance. We need to hunger for more than small pieces of Scripture wrapped around our limited human understanding. We want God to fill us with His holy understanding and share insights with us that will free us from confusion. If we study God’s Word, surround ourselves by godly influences, and stay obedient to God’s direction, our path will not be so hazy like it was for me when I was sixteen. Once the scriptures are written on the tablets of our hearts, the Lord will become our confidence, and He will protect us from the snares of the world.
“Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path” (Psalm 119:105 NIV).