Whatsoever Magazine

Spiritual Posture

Posted on: July 23, 2007

AND LET US not grow weary of doing good. (Galatians 6:9)

About ten or so years ago our family learned a new phrase: Happy Backs. It was a little trainer in manners. Mum and Dad would use it (and sometimes still do) when we were slouching; it would be a cheery reminder to correct our posture.

I think that Galatians 6:9 is the same kind of reminder to me. Maybe we could call it Happy Hearts. We get tired and worn out, and we tend to ‘slouch’ in our spiritual walk, but this reminds us to keep a happy heart while doing God’s will.

There is one particular area in which I tend to slouch, and I’m sure it’s the same for many of you—the practise of daily devotions. May I encourage you with something that helped me correct my spiritual posture in this area?

Do you know the verse: But exhort one another every day? (Hebrews 3:13) I always thought of this verse as indicating face-to-face exhortation, but maybe it could mean the written word also…

Recently, when I had grown weary in my daily devotions, I pulled out a fresh book that I hadn’t read before, a study guide on the Proverbs 31 woman, by Elizabeth George (highly recommended!). Reading this study help was such a great thing to do because it brought fresh insight and direction to my devotions time.

There are three reasons why I think it is good to ‘update’ and bring freshness occasionally to our study.

It gives direction to our study: Often we can become aimless and wander through the Bible reading snippets here and there and not taking much in. This gives a clear focus and a plan to help keep us ‘at it’ and guided.

It encourages us to think beyond our usual tendencies: I know I so often fall into a rut of thinking in which I don’t expand ideas and thoughts, but using a study can stretch our thoughts beyond surface level. Often a statement or change of translation can give new meaning to verses I thought I knew inside out!

It gives another person’s point of view: We have to face the facts… we’re not always right, and having a study or book written by another person can give good ways of looking at Scripture differently. It can be just like having a Christian family member or friend say Why not look at it like this? Could it possibly mean this? Remember: Iron sharpens iron.(Proverbs 27:17)

Now I’m not saying we’re to change tack every time we become tired or things become ‘uninteresting’. We are to cultivate self-discipline, and that can mean sticking at something for a long time, but maybe you can use some encouragement along the way with a fresh outlook on the Word.

Lauren Carey

[originally published in Volume 9 #3 of Whatsoever Magazine]

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