Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Lessons Learned the Hard Way: Why You Can't Just "Read the Bible".

In June of 2011, I decided I was going to read through the Bible in a year. And then, satisified that I had done it, I was going to put it away on a shelf somewhere and never look at it again.

I had been out of the Catholic church since late 2005, and out of church altogether since 2009.

A bit of background for you: I left the Catholic church halfway through my pregnancy with Ella. The church had been less than understanding about Riley's death, and my subsequent pregnancy. I was unmarried at the time. I was also one of the teacher's in their school. Note: they didn't ask me to leave. I left despite their promising me a raise if I stayed.

I'm not even sure what prompted me to start reading the Bible, only that two summers prior, I found a lot of solace in Matthew 6 (the do-not-worry verses).

So, I made my decision. I started with my husband's Bible that had a few of his notes written in it.

I read faithfully every day. At some point I started taking notes.

When June 2012 rolled around, I felt a sense of accomplishment. Yes! I was done!

Only....I couldn't put the Bible down. I started reading again. With Genesis.

The 2012-2013 cycle of my reading was a huge eye-opener for me. I only missed one day. July 26th, 2012. I was on a surgery table. I woke up the following morning, with the words, "Oh no! I didn't read last night!"

That year, God began to work in my heart about my marriage. About the vows I was pretty much forsaking and throwing away. About being a godly wife, a godly woman, a godly mother.

In June 2013, someone asked me if I was going to keep reading. Yes.

I started off with a mostly brand-new Bible, with very few notes scribbled in the margins in Gabe's handwriting. I am now two Bibles in, both of which look pretty much like this.

The girl I was in June 2011 no longer exists. I realize you cannot just "read" the Bible, without it changing your life.

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