I have always found that it is the beginning of a book that catches my attention. I have read a lot of books and before my kids were born I was somewhat of a book nerd. I would read a regular sized novel in just a few short hours and if it was captivating, then the world would totally fall away until I had completed the book. I think it is for that reason that I enjoy falling asleep to the sound of a television because it allows my mind to escape the reality of my day and just for a minute to imagine the story line. I love books. I want to write a book someday.
I never used to read much of the Bible and I know that I need to be reading it much more than I do right now but lately I have been thinking about how I am reading it. I am reading it like a text… no, I don’t mean the thing that appears on your phone screen when it screams like a banshee. I mean that I am reading it as plain text instead of reading it like a story. I read it through the chapters and the verses. I turn one page to the next without grasping that these are real people, real historical events and not just text.
The Bible begins in Genesis like this, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the Earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.”
I wonder what it looked like. Just imagine for a moment the Spirit of God hovering over the waters… formless and empty. Darkness everywhere. And then suddenly there was light. As soon as He spoke, the sun appeared and we had light. I wonder if the sun before that was also formless and void? Was it just a planet or a star just sitting there amidst the galaxies or did He create it when he spoke, “let there be light.”
I wonder if He looked at it like an artist would look at a blank canvas? This is the common approach for people who think of God’s creation. They think of him as an artist but what if we thought of Him differently. What if for a moment we thought of him as a contractor? There are a lot of carpenters in my family and I have seen them take something ugly and create it into something beautiful. I have seen the old houses restored to it’s former glory or disaster turned into beauty because they can see what we cannot.
And as God separated through the water and added land here and sky there, an ocean to fill this area, and a lake to flow through this land…. He saw that it was good. Sometimes I strongly believe that English has killed the beauty of language. The actual phrasing is He saw that it was tob, and tob means that it was good, pleasing, desirable, joyful, best, beautiful… It wasn’t just good it was magnificent! That’s a word that you don’t see in the KJV but that is what should be in place of the word good for these verses.
I want to challenge you, because I am challenging myself, to begin reading the Bible the way I believe it was intended. Read it so your mind can imagine the city streets, your heart beats a little faster as you read the words of David and Goliath, read it so the tears stream down your face when the body is laid in the tomb… Give it your heart and soul because these are the living words of God.
I am going to end here but I am going to continue this in my next post. Have a blessed Wednesday everyone and don’t forget to read more of the Bible today than what you see on fb because the Bible gives us hope… fb gives us …. well it gives us nothing.