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BIBLE TEXT: “And Ezra opened the book in the sight of all the people, for he was standing above all the people; and when he opened it, all the people stood up. And Ezra blessed the Lord, the great God. Then all the people answered, “Amen, Amen!” while lifting up their hands. And they bowed their heads and worshiped the Lord with their faces to the ground.” –Nehemiah 8:5-6
PERSONAL REFLECTION: Upon the completion of rebuilding the wall of Jerusalem and the return of the exiled Israelites to their cities, the people gathered together and asked Ezra the scribe to read the Book of the Law of Moses to them. I was so moved when I read the people’s reaction to Ezra’s opening the book. They raised their hands, bowed their heads, and worshiped, and this was all before he began reading! Just the picture of this overwhelms me.
Can you imagine if the entire congregation of Life Assembly did this when it was time to read the Word? I can already feel the ground trembling and hear the angels singing. God’s Word was a gift to them, and the people treasured and reverenced this gift. The anticipation of God’s Word was enough to call them to worship; for they realized the importance it held in their lives. As I read this passage, I ran my hands over the worn leather of my own Bible – my favorite Bible – the one that I can’t take to church any longer because the binding is falling apart – the Bible that was a gift from Thomas Nelson following my father-in-law’s death. This Bible had seen me through the death of two parents, the birth of a child, and so many other times of struggle and hardship as well as celebrations – 18 years worth. I will never open it in the same way again. Yes, I will stop and worship upon opening it, knowing that God’s Word is a treasured gift.
PRAYER: Father, Author of my Gift,
Don’t ever let me take your Word for granted. Lead me to worship each time I open Your Word of Truth. Help me to feel the newness of this gift each time I hear or read it.
Amen and Amen!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Cindy has been married to Tim Jackson for 26 years and has three children: Audrey (22), Tyler (18), and Drew (15). Cindy has been a homeschool mom for 18 years and has been teaching at Liberty Christian Academy tutorial for 16 years. She spends most of her time as a soccer mom, traveling the state and country with Drew. Reading, writing, and cooking are her favorite pastimes. Although a teacher, she is really a student at heart, always desiring to learn more.