Originally posted on July 6, 2020 @ 11:27 pm
If you talk to 20 different people in the next hour, I’m sure you will get 20 different definitions of faith, different combinations of faith/doubt, different rationales for belief/not belief. Regardless of your religion, or lack of, the Bible is there for you.
Whether you believe in God or not, you need comfort now, you need wisdom now, you need direction for prioritizing now. I dare say there is nowhere, no one, to whom you can turn right now in trust. The governments? They are failing. The churches: well, some are still open and of those that are still open, our modern plague is creeping through the congregations. Education? It is in a shambles right now.
Whether you believe in God or not, there is wisdom, comfort, and direction in the Bible for you. Many people refuse to believe these things, but in all my life, whenever someone has told me they believe nothing in the Bible, 0% of the time has it been a person who has actually read the Bible.
I am not a religious fanatic, although I am technically a member of a rather strict religion. I have never been able to be strict about anything, thus the “technically” part of my statement. But I have always prayed and I know, from personal experience – not from anecdotes, not from blind faith, but from personal experience – that sincere prayer works. I cannot overstate this: prayer and the Bible have always provided me and my family with helpful direction, comfort and wisdom.
I have heard so many snide comments about God and the Bible. It never escapes me when someone refers to him as our Sky Daddy. I’m never personally hurt by these comments. Instead, I feel sad for people who have not had an opportunity to come to know for themselves. Maybe life didn’t get bad enough, maybe they haven’t felt enough pain or been utterly lost enough. Rather than congratulating them for their lifetime of not-enough-pain, not-enough-disaster, not-enough-exasperation, I truly feel sad that never have they had an opportunity to know that the world is so much bigger than we know and we are so much smaller, our problems are so small compared to all the blessings all of us enjoy every day.
So I implore you. Take the time now to turn to the Bible for comfort, wisdom and direction. It doesn’t matter which Bible you use. It doesn’t matter what religion you are “technically” a part of. It doesn’t even matter if you don’t believe in God; I bet you have read many self-help books in your day.
There is a Bible in your house, I am certain. It is always the best selling book for a reason. If you don’t have one you bought yourself or that is hidden away on your shelves, I bet there is one in your attic or in the trunk in your basement. Also, you can access Bibles online. If you really, really can’t find any way to get a Bible in front of you, you can shop for one here. (It was not my intention, when I started this post, to link to Amazon and I apologize that I have done so. But if you need one or want one, you can indeed get one. I am an Amazon affiliate; I will make a commission if you purchase. However, please note that there are a lot of options to get access to a Bible, without purchasing from Amazon or anywhere else.)
At this point, you might be thinking that you don’t actually know what to read in the Bible for wisdom, comfort and direction. I will give you my recommendations, the places in the Bible I turn:
For comfort, the book of Psalms. This book deals with surviving through all sorts of adversities and assures you that you are not alone, God is there for you if you just turn to him.
For wisdom, the book of Proverbs. King Solomon wrote thousands of proverbs, all simple verses, many comparisons (“this is this but that is that”) that will speak loudly and clearly to you about your day-to-day life, preparation for the future, wise use of your time, etc.
For encouragement, the book of Ecclesiastes. This book is one of my favorites. I am stunned by how concisely it describes what is important in life. When I read Ecclesiastes, I realize that life is so much simpler than we tend to think – yes, it’s true – and I instantly feel relief and hope and like I’m not the worst thing and neither is my life. This book helps me approach life simply which leads me to greater happiness and satisfaction.
I hope that you will allow yourself to venture into the Bible. Just give it a chance. It’s the best self help book ever written. You might very well be surprised at the good it does your heart, your mind, and your stress level.