A question was asked of my church family recently. “What do we want to study in Bible class?”

I am wondering if perhaps a better question is, “What does God want us to study?” A verse in Hosea keeps nagging at me.

Hosea 6:6 I desire steadfast love and not sacrifice, the KNOWLEDGE OF GOD, not burnt offerings.

The knowledge of God. Can it be that after all these years of living, of choosing Christ, of attempts at righteous living, of serving, we think we know God and that there is nothing left to uncover? As in our marriages, friendships, and parenting, do we think we are so familiar with each other that there is nothing new left to learn? With wood, the varied tones, the life marking rings-its character-become more evident with the handling of oiled hands that turn and stroke it, and eyes that study its story. In our walk with God, do we pursue only what is new and forget the value of running our hands over the knots and streaks of polished wood, deliberately crafted and worn by time?

When I am truthful with myself, I know that there are parts of me, still, that I have not revealed to my husband, my friends, my children. For whatever reason—lack of opportunity, time, situation, need, fear—I have kept some parts of me back. Sometimes it’s because I believe they will have no appreciation or understanding of these guarded heart crevices—a hidden talent, desires, hope, wisdom, hurt, disappointment, fear. Other times it’s just not the right time. Every now and again, though, someone peeks under the crevices’ cloak, and dares to take time to explore and draw close–to know me in this way. The bonding that comes with knowing another, that knitting of hearts together, is stronger than any physical binding. It fortifies the relationship and empowers its work.

So, the answer to this question, “What do we want to study?”, can it be Jehovah Himself? Can we dig deeply, ingesting the holy words that reveal WHO He is, by watching HOW He is; how He speaks and moves, who He calls, how He decides? By pursuing a knowledge of Him, can we fall in love all over again, more deeply, more steadfastly? Will we be compelled then, to walk more humbly with Him?

The holy, worn and living wood of His word calls us to turn it over and over again in our heart hands. To stroke and study. To know and understand.

“Let him who glories glory in this, that he understands and knows Me, that I am the Lord who practice steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth, for in these things I delight, says the Lord.” Jeremiah 9:24

About An Earthen Vessel--Terri Apgar

Wife of one, mother of three, so grateful for God's grace--that's me. I'm just tucked into my bay window, opening my heart to God and trying to be brave about letting Him use all that He has crafted inside me to His glory.
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