Slow your breathing and become aware of the taking in and letting out of your breath. Focus on putting things aside so you will be open to what God is saying to you today.
Acts 17:10-15 (NRSV)
That very night the believers sent Paul and Silas off to Beroea; and when they arrived, they went to the Jewish synagogue. These Jews were more receptive than those in Thessalonica, for they welcomed the message very eagerly and examined the scriptures every day to see whether these things were so. Many of them therefore believed, including not a few Greek women and men of high standing. But when the Jews of Thessalonica learned that the word of God had been proclaimed by Paul in Beroea as well, they came there too, to stir up and incite the crowds. Then the believers immediately sent Paul away to the coast, but Silas and Timothy remained behind. Those who conducted Paul brought him as far as Athens; and after receiving instructions to have Silas and Timothy join him as soon as possible, they left him.
I have often thought I would like to be compared to the Beroeans. Unlike the Thessalonians, we don’t know of any epistles written to them, but Luke said they were of more noble character because they were eager to hear the good news of God, and they compared what they heard to the scriptures to see if it was true.
What an example! How eager are we to hear the word of God preached? Do we wait with anticipation for the pastor to begin the message on Sunday morning? Do we seek out other opportunities to hear the word of God proclaimed by missionaries on furlough or Bible study leaders on a weeknight?
However, eagerness alone might find us following any dynamic leader who fills a pulpit or writes a blog. We must remember that equally important is the practice of comparing what we hear preached with what the scriptures say. As we read the scriptures for ourselves and listen to others share their understanding, we will grow in the grace of God, developing deep roots and strong branches that will stay strong even when winds of life threaten to break us.
Dear Lord, increase my desire to hear your word and give me the discipline to read it carefully and regularly. Thanks be to God for the written, spoken, and living word. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Go with God.