You’ve been attending Bible studies for years. Faithfully go through your morning devotionals. Sign up for the yearly mission trip. And you may wonder, “When will this all come together? When will I be golden?” The answer is, “Never” – as long as you’re on this earth.
Our walk with God is just that: a walk, a journey that winds through wastelands of disappointment and meadows of sun-drenched happiness. It won’t end until we do – and then an entire new adventure begins when we see our Lord face-to-face. But while we walk the earth, it is our Christian duty to fortify ourselves through such spiritual disciplines as study, prayer, fasting and service.
Lent is the ideal time to concentrate our efforts to walk closer with God. These 40 days are meant to be days of trial and testing, a period of leaving worldly clatter and striking into the desert of devotion. There is something to learn during this time, and, indeed, at any time when we take a breath. The great Jewish philosopher, Maimonides, once asked a rhetorical question: “Until when is a person obligated to study Torah?” His straightforward answer: “Until the day of one’s death.”
So it must be with you and me. Every day is an opportunity to pick up a nugget of biblical wisdom, an occasion to resist temptation (or repent if we fall), a chance to serve Jesus Himself through someone in need. We have to be intentional about this or it won’t happen. But if we challenge ourselves every day — learn one thing that strengthens us, teaches us, stretches us, or helps us to open our eyes to truth — it adds up. I’m reading a biography of George Washington and one of his favorite expressions was “Many mickles make a muckle.” Today we might say, “Many drops fill a bucket” – and using a pharmaceutical measurement, someone once calculated that it took 92,160 drops to fill a one-gallon bucket!
Keep adding drops to your bucket. On some days, it might not seem like much, but don’t give up. The alternative is going dry.
Photo courtesy of Rodrigo Valdez via flickr