2 Timothy 3:10-17 (NRSV)
Now you have observed my teaching, my conduct, my aim in life, my faith, my patience, my love, my steadfastness, my persecutions, and suffering the things that happened to me in Antioch, Iconium, and Lystra. What persecutions I endured! Yet the Lord rescued me from all of them. Indeed, all who want to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted. But wicked people and impostors will go from bad to worse, deceiving others and being deceived. But as for you, continue in what you have learned and firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it, and how from childhood you have known the sacred writings that are able to instruct you for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, so that everyone who belongs to God may be proficient, equipped for every good work.
All scripture is inspired by God . . . so that the person who serves God may be fully qualified and equipped to do every kind of good deed.
- 2 Timothy 3:16-17 (TEV)
DURING Lent, the 40 days preceding Easter, many Christians practice self-denial by giving up something like sweets. Last year, our pastor suggested we add something to our daily Lenten routine - a meaningful expression of our faith such as writing special notes, making phone calls, or visiting shut-ins. My choice was to spend at least one hour each day reading God's word.
I had a traditional Bible, but I was struggling to understand it. Rather than give up on my commitment, I found a different translation. God's word has taken on a whole new significance for me now. I often compare the two Bibles, one with its study notes and the other with its contemporary language. On index cards, I record my favorite verses from both translations. I carry the cards in my purse, look at them often, and refer to them when I want to send encouraging words to a friend.
These lessons from God's word offer a wonderful sense of peace and reassurance and make each day an opportunity to practice my faith by reaching to others with God's love.
Prayer: Dear God, thank you for leading us to your word, your message of love and life to us. Amen.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY:
What can I do during Lent to deepen my faith?
People without access to a Bible
By Deanna Himelick, Florida