I study a variety of subjects, gleaning the surface at times for a day or two, other times delving deeply for months.
Some subjects most likely will never leave my side.
Certain subjects I look into out of curiosity and by choice, other subjects I am compelled to explore in order to understand, to communicate them better with others, etc.
It is great when curiosity and compulsion meet harmoniously; your interest being challenged and your curiosity being fed.
When I began studying the bible in my early twenties, I was led by the hand into the subject matter.
I was curious to find out what the message was for me; wondering if God was calling me.
I was also afraid to learn certain things about it and myself; the self being challenged to stand down.
Neither Today, nor tomorrow, can I claim to understand every literal meaning or interpretation, besides the revelations that can only be understood beyond literal interpretations
But the journey of revelation over the years has been quite inspiring and joyous to put it mildly.
Yet, there is an area which lays far beyond simply 'knowing' what something is saying.
Plenty of people can regurgitate and repeat the things they read.
Shakespeare is read and repeated in universities, as are plenty of other famous authors the world over.
Yet the bible is something quite distinct and altogether different when comparing it to intriguing literature.
Aside from a history book, and an instruction manual, it is actually something much more than can be perceived.
The book, letters or pages that comprise a bible are not magical or mystical on their own.
That is merely ink, paper, and binding... materials of no significance.
It is the message found therein which makes it such an amazing composition.
And this message sometimes falls on deaf ears, although the hearer has perfect hearing.
The understanding falls outside the view of perception of even the most educated and learned of scholars.
It doesn't take a genius to learn and live out the instructions of the bible.
It takes a willing and soft heart to Live out the message.
I've seen people living out the message of faith, hope and love without being able to quote any portion of the bible.
They somehow have it written on their hearts.
And what is even more astounding and provocative is that such a heart isn't something achieved on one's own.
You can't order a soft heart over the internet or find it at a specialty store.
A soft heart is a gift from Above; from the Author of the bible's message.
Yet, we also have a part and small role.
We have a choice in 'how' we go about receiving a soft heart.
We can beg and plead in prayer to Him who hears those calling His Name.
We can also follow through with better choices (repentance) over past choices, experiencing the process of faith in humility.
Another striking and scary reality is that many people can recite the words found in Scripture, yet they hardly reflect the Author.
When these folks speak on their own, when not repeating what they read, they could sound like someone very different than is exemplified in the bible.
May we be those who are gifted the heart and the ears to live out and mirror the Message of the ages.