Lightly edited from a 2007 email I sent to our grandchildren after a few days the extended Bastian family had spent together.
I mentioned in the final devotional of our days together the benefits of daily Bible reading and prayer at all stages of the Christian life, but didn’t get a chance to develop my thoughts. Here are some additional ideas for you.
1. Daily devotions are an essential part of being disciples of our Lord. And discipleship contains within it the idea of discipline. The practice of daily devotions for most people begins as a discipline and only later becomes a joy.
2. Along with discipline, daily devotions include a kind of romance. The Scriptures contain love letters from God to us. And they contain words of adoration and praise of humans toward God, especially in the Psalms. We read the Bible avidly daily because we want to be reminded of God’s love for us, and to have our love for him stirred in return.
3. The Bible is the only source of trustworthy and detailed information about Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior. We read it to glean that information. All four gospel accounts of the life of Our Lord are fascinating reading.
4. Workers order their days by a job description, policy manual, or directions from superiors. We get our daily directives for the Christian life from the Scriptures. They come from God, our commander-in-chief.
5. Children don’t approach parents only with requests or when an emergency strikes. Neither should we come to our Heavenly Father only in times of dire need. How much healthier to cultivate a relationship in daily communion through Scripture and prayer.
Grandma and I have a time after breakfast every day when we give ourselves in devotion to our Lord. Grandma reads aloud each day due to my poor eyesight, and we comment together on what we have read. We take turns praying, and as part of our prayers we bring each of you before the heavenly throne every day. And we pray that each of you will also adopt a practice of coming before the Throne of Grace every day via Scripture reading and prayer. You’ll never be sorry if you do.
Image info: Jona Park (via flickr.com)
My new memoir, FROM KITCHEN CHAIR TO PULPIT: A Memoir of Family, Faith, and Ministry, has just been published. I hope you will click on one of the links that follow to be taken to the page on these sites that enable you to view and potentially purchase the paperback or ebook. My book shows just how extraordinary the pastoral life can be, describing how I prepared for ministry and ministered to three congregations and then, as a bishop, to pastors as a bishop, with the help of my wife, Kathleen, and the support of our children as they grew up from children to adults.