Day 16: Keep Your Tools Sharp (Acts 8:26-40)
Today’s Passage: Acts 8:26-40
I sailed on Merchant Marine ships for a couple years when I was in college. I was in engineering, which meant I was below-decks with the engines.
It was my first exposure to a full-blown machine shop, complete with lathes, welding machines, and a host of tools. I quickly learned two things.
First, you did not leave tools out. You used them, then you cleaned them, making sure they were ready for the next time needed, and put them back.
It was frustrating for everyone when they went to get a tool and, either it wasn’t there, or it wasn’t in good enough condition to use.
Second, knowing how to properly use a tool took some practice—even the most basic tool.
Today we read of someone who is able to use the most powerful tool God has given to humankind—His Word.
Be not confused. Understanding God’s Word only happens by the power of the Holy Spirit, and only after you have come to know Jesus as Lord and Savior.
I have met many a scholar who studies the Bible as a literary document, and many a non-believer who approached the Text with skepticism. For some, its power overwhelms them and they come to believe, for others, they steadfastly resist.
However, I have NEVER met someone, who, truly seeking to know God, that after they opened His Word, did not meet him.
Pause and consider that last statement. If a person who truly seeks God opens His Word, the Holy Spirit responds. In many instances the Holy Spirit responds by sending a believer. Such is the case today as Phillip is given the privilege to share what God has revealed to him—that Jesus is the suffering servant that Isaiah prophesied about.
Let me be clear. We are not to manipulate God’s Word the way we might an inanimate tool—using it in “any-which-way”. Some have. We however must seek to learn from those who have gone before, always sitting under the authority of Scripture.
Yet with those cautions, I would suggest, we are to immerse ourselves in God’s Word. To love reading it—everyday.
Consider listening to it on your smart phone. If you take a walk for 20 minutes to 30 minutes, you can listen to many of the letters of the New Testament. How about a long car ride—you can listen to some of the longer books of the Bible.
For me there is something about “sitting with the Word”. I read, I think about things going on in the world, and in my life…I mull over what God’s Word has to say to all of this…I pray. When I do that, I am simply putting my life “through” God’s Word. And my life is not remarkably much different from yours. Which means, when I get a chance to listen to what is going on in your life, I might be able, if asked, to offer what God’s Word said to me about a similar situation.