January 19, 2023
Precious Moments in God’s Priceless Word
Your words were found, and I ate them, and Your Words became to me a joy and the delight of my heart, for I am called by Your Name,
O Lord, God of hosts (Jeremiah 15:16 ESV).
Friend to Friend
My father gave me a white, leather-bound Precious Moments Bible when I was young. If you weren’t raised in the church in the eighties, you might not know that Precious Moments characters are cartoon-like drawings and porcelain figurines of little children in various poses, always with a Bible verse communicating the main theme of the scene. I had half a dozen of these statuettes atop my bedroom dresser. My Precious Moments Bible was filled with darling pictures, and I loved it with all my little-girl heart.
While the gift was from my dad, who took me to church on Sunday mornings and Wednesday nights, I don’t actually have memories of opening that Bible with him. No one in my home taught me to use a highlighter to underline passages that ministered to my heart. I don’t recall either of my parents modeling daily Bible reading or serving up God’s Word around our family table. Yet somehow, I found His words and I ate them, and they became a joy to me and the delight of my young heart. Over the years, I spent many “precious moments” in that Bible.
By the time I was in high school, I had developed a sweet tooth for God’s Word. I was drawn to the psalms especially. As a highly sensitive teen, the poetry of the psalms was a balm to my often-troubled soul. God reminded me each time I opened my Bible that He was mighty to save, a very present help in my times of trouble, always near and abiding. God’s Word flooded into the broken places as I read. I experienced that He delighted in me; that He made me fearfully and wonderfully; and He invited me to take refuge in Him when I felt alone. In that bitter season, God’s Word proved sweet. I tasted and saw His goodness daily. With what can only be described as childlike faith, I believed.
When it was time for me to head to college, my dad gave me a new Bible. It was a massive Life Application Bible with a red cover. Half of each page provided context and definitions to help me better understand the passages. I remember him joking that it was time for me to have a “big-girl Bible”—and this big-girl Bible was big! The day I moved into my dorm room, I sat that hunk of a book on my bedside table. Thud. Perhaps it was due to the sheer weight of it, but I grew some spiritual muscle while reading that year.
Today both of those Bibles — the Precious Moments Bible and the Life Application Bible — are displayed on my bookshelf. Of course, this isn’t a competition. The goal isn’t to have a Bible collection on your shelf, but a collection of the Bible stored up in yourself. I merely keep them in plain sight as a visual reminder of God’s past faithfulness.
Though they are tattered and worn, with bindings falling apart and notes poking out from between thin pages, they are beautiful to me. Throughout my young life, I often felt weary and worn myself, which is why I clung to my Bible until it was well-worn. My heart was tender and tattered, so I turned to God’s promises with such regularity that those Bible pages became tattered too. As God’s Word bound me up, those two Bibles came unbound. The pages are literally falling out of each one after falling into my heart over the years.
I’ve come to believe that a Bible that’s falling apart represents a life that’s been put back together. Have you experienced that yourself? Whether you need a new binding on your life or a new binding on your Bible, I am so glad that you are believing God’s Word with me today. It is my hope that you enjoy many precious moments with the Lord in the year ahead. As you ingest His Word, I pray that it becomes a joy to you, the absolute delight of your heart.
Dear Lord, help me to find Your words and eat them. Let them become my greatest joy. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Now It’s Your Turn
Does the idea of “eating” God’s Word whet your appetite? Or does the thought of feasting on your Bible make you feel anxious, unsure where to even begin? Let me invite you to taste and see just how good it is!
More from the Girlfriends
Wendy Speake is author of The 40-Day Feast: Taste and See The Goodness of God’s Word. Written in 40 easy to consume daily devotions, it will surely whet your appetite for the feast bound up in your Bible!
© 2023 by Wendy Speake. All rights reserved.
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Originally published Thursday, 19 January 2023.