I’d mentioned before that I’m studying the book of Colossians. I want to tell you what that means to me, because everyone has a different idea of what “studying” the Bible means.
The Lord started leading me to Colossians a couple of months ago. I was all about Thessalonians at that time, though. So I put off Colossians, knowing it would be there when I was done with the Thessalonian books. But they were very dry. The words didn’t penetrate well, let alone speak to me. But I pressed on because I REALLY wanted to get every bit of marrow from that bone. Until I came to the place that we all come to when we resist the Holy Spirit.
In my experience, resisting the Holy Spirit – the leading of God – ends in one of two ways every time. Either I “break”, giving up the resistance, and repent (not just sorrow, but the actual turning away) and follow His lead, which leads to blessing every single time, or I continue to resist until Lord stops. When that happens I feel sorrow that is deep, loneliness that is cold, and discontent that doesn’t leave. I think of it not as desertion by God, but more of a “OK, let me know when you’re ready to resume our fellowship. When you’re ready to get back into step with Me.” That second thing is terrible. Just terrible. I hate getting to that place. And when it ends it is by His hand, not my own. My despair continues until He calls me again and I am ready – desperate, even – to run back to Him as soon as I hear His voice.
This time, however, it didn’t get that far. This time I got bored with Thessalonians, having a sense that there was nothing there for me anyway. (Of course there is, but not alone…not without the God and I doing it together – they are His words, after all – and He had something else to tell me just then!)
So as I’m typing, I’m realizing that this isn’t about Colossians at all. It’s about tripping over an uneven spot of my own making as Jesus and I walk hand in hand through my visit here in the world. He doesn’t let go of my hand but waits while I cry about my scraped knee, then holds out His hand and waits for me to take hold of it again so He can pick me up and we can continue on our way. He leads me along the path of righteousness until the next time I want to go my own way…and so it goes. Of course as time goes on we stray less and less. But it happens.
So in the end I cracked open Colossians, starting my time there with a read-through. And what do you know, there was a big bite of truth nearly every other verse! My excitement grew as I read and didn’t want to stop. He illuminated things that I’d never seen before, shining a light on them that reflected in my spirit. And now, a couple of weeks later, I still can’t get enough. Reading, listening to the audio while I read, seeking out nuggets from messages and commentaries by great teachers, and doing it together with the Lord. This book is so relevant, it’s almost like it was written for me!
And that’s the blessing that happens every single time I trust and obey, and listen, and heed, and follow. Every. Single. Time.