Thursday, August 30, 2012

My Bible

We went to church on Sunday. As usual, I fought the anxiety. One of the symptoms, unfortunately, is needing to use the bathroom, sometimes more than just once during the service. So I made my way through the crowd and entered the bathroom, carrying my Bible and my purse. I exited with my purse, and took my seat next to my husband.
I had just commented earlier to a friend, how there was an extra pew in the back added to the side where we always sit, this pew prevents anyone from being able to easily escape exit on that side. (you are quite enclosed in) Now, the other side is always very full, and so is the inside aisle. Isn’t it good to see a full church!  So, anyway…. being seated, I realized that I had left my Bible in the bathroom. So looking around, I had to plan carefully whose toes I would need to step on in order to get out from the pew. Of course, I could have always used one of the Bibles that are placed in the pew, and wait until the conclusion of the service to find my mine…
But, I could not stand the thought that my Bible, my most precious possession was not near! I felt like a mother whose child had gone missing, and no matter how caged in and anxious I felt, I had to find it!
I planned my escape during a hymn when everyone was standing. I headed straight for the ladies room. It was not there. I opened the adjacent nursery door and asked the women in there if they had seen a purple Bible. They had not. I proceeded into the Sunday school area…not there. As I made my way back towards the sanctuary, I noticed my Bible had been placed near the entry door of the fellowship hall! I was flooded with relief.
So why am I writing about this seemingly ordinary occurrence? After all, everyone has lost a Bible, right?
Wrong…not me. Since I have been a Christian now for over 27 years, I have only used two personal Bibles, replacing the first one about 4 years ago when it started to really fall apart,   It was a hard-cover KJV that I had bought well over 20 years ago at a yard sale for $1.00! It was like brand new then, it’s pages unmarked. It lies in a drawer today, the dog eared pages marked with highlights and footnotes, yellowed with age.

CIMG1092An old friend..My compass and Light ..this old Bible has seen me through many years, carried me through many trials, and grief…rebellious teenagers, death, lost friendships, job loss, illness, and pain, etc.. As well as many joys and triumphs.
(As you can see in the first photo above, it looks like I have really taken a bite out of it!)
So when I bought the new Bible, also a KJV. I was thrilled with it’s soft leather cover, a deep purple…purple is my favorite color. I also like how the lettering is enlarged, as it is easier for my aging eyes to read .

I meticulously went through this new Bible, repeating all the highlights and footnotes, and of course, adding many new ones in the last four years. Also, I transferred many little things that were lovingly stored within the old Bible, A candy wrapper, given to me from a sweet little disabled girl whose parents were missionaries in the Ukraine, A note from a dear friend to encourage me through a tough time. Prayer requests…many of them, written on everything from ripped pieces of paper, to offering envelopes taken from the pew. Recently I shared a picture of a small dried violet given from a friend. The inside of this new Bible contains stickers, placed there from a couple of little children who were having some trouble staying quiet, and occupied during service at one of the churches I attended. Then there are the usual, bookmarks from various people, one hand-made, and some bulletins from different churches, with notes written on them as well. (although these get cleaned out regularly)
So, this Bible not only contains the living Word of God, but also serves as a type of journal and roadmap of my life as a child of God. So when it went missing, I felt, for the first time, just how important my personal Bible really is to me.
I have been thinking about this all week now. I realize there are places in the world where it is considered a crime to possess a Bible. I wonder, how many times we who are free to have a Bible, quote from that Bible, and attend a church, take for granted these freedoms?
At what cost would you continue to carry your Bible, talk about the Lord with others, and worship and study about the Lord in a church building or other public place? I would hope that if ever faced with a situation like that, we would all react like a mother or father in pursuit of a lost child…risking anything and everything to be with that precious one.
God, is not a lost child, that would be us, when we stray from His presence.
Yes, I do understand that God’s Word is hidden in our hearts, (Psalm 119:11) and I know that Jesus is the LIVING WORD, and the Holy Spirit dwells within each believer. We are truly, Never Forsaken. Therefore if we did not have our Bibles available to us, Jesus would still be to us, the living fountain of life, imparting knowledge and instruction to us. As His grace is sufficient! 
(2 Corinthians 12:9) 
So, I am wondering, What does the Bible mean to you? Is it a valued possession that would send you seeking it out if it went missing from your hand? Would you be willing to step on a few toes in pursuit of it? Is there anything that is trying to cage you in, away from the Bible lately?
Maybe now is the time to plan your escape away from where you are kept from pursuing a closer relationship with the Lord…He is right there, waiting for you, at the entrance door of your heart! 


Most assuredly I say to you, if you have faith as a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there, ’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you. (Matthew 17:20)

Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. (Hebrews 13:5)

Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. (Rev. 3:20)

 



8 comments:

  1. Hi Lisa,
    My Bible is my most precious possession too and I can totally relate to how you must have felt.

    Glad you found it.

    Blessings hon,
    <><

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  2. Wonderful post, Lisa! I have several Bibles. One was my grandmother's that was given to me when the doctors thought I might die. It is very precious, especially since she was not the most demonstrative or giving grandmother. It had a mustard seed charm on the zipper and somewhere along the way it fell off, and I was quite unhappy about that. Now days I have a lovely parallel Bible with the KJV, NKJV, the New Century versioon and the Message side by side, plus Bible commentary. It's really wonderful to read all the translations next to each other. Sure makes you understand the Bible a lot easier. Plus the print is a lot easier to read! As I see more and more of the prophecies coming true, the more I treasure my Bible!

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  3. What a great post! I have a lot of Bibles in different versions. But I have one that I've been using regularly lately. It's burgundy. I wouldn't want it to go missing. I also still have the first Bible I wore out. Can't part with it. My whole day changes when I read the Bible. His Word is so perfect and never goes out void. I have 2 Bibles from when my Grandma passed away. I like to look at them and wonder what she thought about. We are blessed to be able to have His Word for sure.

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  4. I have many Bibles...some quite modern, some quite old, but all of them are loved.

    My favorite translation has been the Amplified version. It is marked, highlighted, written on, and filled with notes from the trials that My Lord has allowed in my life.

    Now, I have a Bible app on my Kindle...but it just doesn't have the same feel, the same comfort as my old Bible.

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts...

    Mrs. B.

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  5. Hi Lisa ~ It's great to see you again! Wow ~ I have recently found out just how important my Bible is to me. When I was in the hospital for the night I was really wishing I had it. I really needed to read it then. Instead I prayed off and on while I was "not" sleeping! I took it with me to the testing on Tuesday just in case they found something and they wouldn't let me go home. My Bible is soooo important to me now!! My Bible is my most important treasure!

    Blessings...Chelle

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  6. Hi Lisa,
    My Bible is just about worn out and time to replace it with a new one. I have markings, highlights, notes all through out. I hate to retire it to get a new one. This Bible has been with me since right after I got saved. While my Bible may age and fall apart, God's Word will endure forever.

    I have been away form blogging for a while, but I am back now. Thanks for sharing this post. I enjoyed reading.

    Blessings,
    Ken

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  7. Hallo! I recognize your church-fear. You write very visual and I can easily translate your post. Thank you. Fascinating to read about your Bible! I'm ashamed a bit ... because I have a lot less in my Bible reading next month. You encourage me to love my Bible more and more :-)

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  8. That's a treasure for sure.. Like you I have my favorite old Bible and though the pages are worn, I always keep it close by..So happy you found it..Blessings, Susie

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