Jesus said, “Man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.” (Mat 4:4)
The Word of God is to the soul what food is to the body. Would you ever choose to stop eating for days, weeks, months, even years? Or would you just eat a bit of chocolate here and a potato there, spread out over months and years whenever you had the urge to nibble?
Yet we do that with the Word of God. A crisis hits so we “eat” a verse. Or we sit in church and let a teacher “eat” a verse and tell us what it tastes like.
We could never live this way physically. We’d be sick as dogs, and die early.
And we can’t live this way spiritually.
Healthy food is to be taken in regularly as the top priority for living. We know that, and we prioritize eating physically, most people three times a day, yet we don’t prioritize taking in the Word of God with anywhere near the same sense of urgency. But the truth is we are first spiritual beings so being more diligent to keep ourselves alive physically than spiritually makes no sense.
Giving priority to internalizing the Word of God may be challenging, but only in proportion to the extent we value the Word in our lives.
Most of us spend at least 15 minutes a day checking Facebook or non-essential emails. Here’s a great quote from John Piper that puts those few minutes in perspective for us:
“Suppose you read slowly like I do – maybe about the same speed that you speak – 200 words a minute. If you read fifteen minutes a day for one year (say just before supper, or just before bed), you will read 5,475 minutes in the year. Multiply that by 200 words a minute, and you get 1,095,000 words that you would read in a year. Now an average serious book might have about 360 words per page. So you would have read 3,041 pages in one year. That’s ten very substantial books. All in fifteen minutes a day.”
Hallelujah! We could read our bibles through 3 times this year just using one coffee break a day!