Tuesday, September 21, 2010

1/3 of the way through the Bible, just getting started on seeking God

Through the Bible in 90 Days: 30

Read: 1 Chronicles 10:1-23:32

Verse that stood out:
Seek the LORD and his strength, seek his presence continually – 1 Chronicles 16:11

Day 30 on this project of reading the Bible through in 90 days. That's a third of the way through. Whoo-hoo! So far, I've kept up with the blogging and the reading. I'm not saying all of the blogs have been exceptional. I’ve spent the last week and a half in a doctoral seminar at Truett Seminary which has meant the blogging has had to happen during quick breaks or after eight hours of class. My apologies for any lapse in creativity.

I'm not complaining. I've enjoyed class and the blogging. As I’ve noted before, I’m a quite a nerd, so the intellectual dialogue that happens each day in class really brings delight to my soul. We’ve spent time talking about the interplay of church and culture, discussed current trends in theology, and explored different ways of interpreting tough Bible passages. I’ve loved every minute of it (though I'm definitely missing the family).

What has been most refreshing, however, is that alongside and intermingled within all of the intellectual dialogue has been a constant emphasis that it’s not enough to know about God. No, as Christians we’re after more, we want to actually know God. We want to, as David writes, “Seek his presence continually.” This seeking is easier said than done. My job concerns the things of God, and yet I can go all day without being aware of God’s presence. My guess is, that’s not a problem just for preachers.

In portions of the seminar, we’ve been discussing practices that help us discern God’s presence. One that I’ve been trying to practice is the examine. The examine can take a few different forms, but it’s basically a time of reflection over one’s day in which you attempt to discover moments when you were aware of God’s presence. To try this, take ten to fifteen minutes tonight before you go to bed, think through all that you did today and ask yourself, “What part of the day was I most aware of God’s presence? What part of the day was I least aware that God was there?” Or, another way to ask these questions is, “What am I most thankful for today? What am I least thankful for?” The examine is really the practice of paying attention. We trust, after all, that God has indeed been with us. The question becomes, "When did I have my eyes open to that truth?"

1 comment:

Barbara Welsh said...

Alas, I can barely remember what I ate for breakfast, so an evening reflection might be a challenge for me. I take mini-breaks throughout the day to feel His presence. For instance, just now it is raining and I can't wait to step outside and smell the newly washed earth! On my drive into work I was spellbound by the layer upon layer of flattened clouds overhead. What a joy it is to live in His presence every day!