For, “All people are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall, 1 Peter 1:24 NIV
We have a few varieties of bunches in our yard that bloom at different times. In the early spring, we have the yellow of the forsythia; in summer, we have the blue hydrangea, and in early fall, we have the purple Rose-of-Sharon. For three of the seasons, there is always some color, then comes fall. The blooms have fallen, and the grass slowly turns brown and goes dormant. When fall comes, I'm a little sad to see these changes for a little while, but then recognize the beauty the season of fall also brings—the leaves’ color and the cool crispness in the air. Somewhere in the back of my mind, I also know that the cycle will begin again with fresh blooms next spring.
No surprise to any of us is the knowledge that everything in this world is short-term. Peter goes on to say in verse 25, "but the word of the Lord endures forever." Amid all the temporary of this world is the one consistency of God. He is the “same yesterday, today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8), and his Word is timeless. From the early days, long before it was written, it was passed orally from generation to generation, until the return of Christ, the scripture lives on. Yes, it is written on pages in the Bible, but more importantly, it is written on our hearts. That is why it is important to read scripture. In it is the sacred and divine essence of God to help us in every situation. Like a good meal, it is to be enjoyed in small bites, savoring its richness, and not wolfed down.
Here's an exercise for today. All you need is a Bible, paper, and pen or pencil. Before starting, welcome God into the reading of the scripture. Read Matthew 6:9-13; this is a very familiar text but take the time to read it slowly. Reflect on the passage for a few minutes. Write down any thoughts and questions that come to mind. Reread the passage, keeping in mind your notes. Did you answer any of your questions? Did you notice anything new? Throughout the day, as new thoughts and questions come to you, jot them down. Revisit the scripture and at the end of the day. Has your understanding of the text changed?
God, we give thanks for the permanency of your Word. Please help as we read and meditate upon the sacred text. Let our hearts and minds be open to the movement of the Holy Spirit. Help us to understand what they mean for us in this here and now. In the name of Jesus Christ, we pray. Amen.