Delight in the Word
When I think about my grandma, I often picture her sitting at her kitchen table with a Bible open in front of her. It seemed like she was constantly reading God's Word, or praying. After she passed away in 2008, I remember sitting down with her well-worn King James, smiling through tears each time I came across my grandmother's distinctive handwriting—and humorous spelling mistakes—in the margins.
As a poor immigrant from Germany, Babette, or “Oma” as her grandchildren called her, had few resources, three kids and multiple jobs after moving to the U.S. following World War II. She had to learn English whenever and however she could. As I poured lovingly over Oma's marked-up Bible, I considered her struggles with learning a
second language and saw her scrawled margin notes in a new light. I think everyone on the planet would agree the Bible can be confusing. Yet my grandma kept reading. Until her eyesight finally failed her, the Good Book was always open, three or four cheap Bic pens within arm's reach and at the ready.
I never read the Bible while Oma was alive. Or course, now that she's gone, I wish I had. When I visited her, she always kept me entertained with stories—everything from the funny to the miraculous—from her past. But, I imagine talking about God's promises and the impact they had on her life would have been truly special—for both of us.
Thankfully, I know that when my time on this earth is done, she and I will have plenty of time to "chat" about the Word. We'll sit and share our favorite verses with each other and rejoice over all of the wonderful, perfect and true messages our Heavenly Father blessed us with during our lives, the passages we savored in good times and the ones that lifted us up when our circumstances seemed bleak.
Reading Scripture isn't always easy. There are times I pause and realize I don't understand a word I've just read. But, when that happens, I often think about Oma and how she didn't allow her lack of education or a language barrier keep her from seeking the Lord. Her perseverance will always be an encouragement to me. Besides, I know that those who are in Christ have been given the Holy Spirit to instruct us (John 14:26). The Bible also tells us that if we pray and ask God for wisdom, He will honor that request and give to us generously (James 1:5).
If you are neglecting the Bible, you're doing yourself a huge disservice. Scripture says His word is a lamp to our feet and a light to our paths (Psalm 119:105). Plus, you might be missing out on having some really meaningful conversations with a child, a spouse...or a grandparent.
"Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night."