BY: Sharon Sepik
E-MAIL ADDRESS: firstname.lastname@example.org
BIBLE TEXT: Revelation 3:20 (NIV) : “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.”
1 Corinthians 2:14: “But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.”
PERSONAL REFLECTION: I am research junkie. I Google everything. If I have a question about anything I google it until I find what I am looking for. A few weekends ago, I went to a wildlife safari park on Saturday and a zoo on Sunday. I found myself researching a lot, to the point where I missed much of what was going on around me, because I was on a quest for knowledge looking for an answer.
I think Google may possibly be one of my favorite things. I love to learn. If I could be perpetually enrolled in college, I would eagerly enroll. No matter where I am, if a question comes to mind, I go off on a hunt finding out the answer to whatever it is that I am pondering. The cow I saw on Sunday looked much like the cow I saw yesterday. What’s the difference between the two cows and what is this Sunday cow’s real name? A young girl heard me wondering out loud what kind of cow it was. She said, “It’s an Oreo Cow.” After she was out of earshot I told my husband, “That doesn’t answer my question. I know that cow isn’t really called an Oreo Cow.” It was nonsensical and the cow closely resembled the Scottish Highland Cow I researched Saturday. Its scruffy look must be for a purpose besides being cute. After the cow came a caterpillar, “What kind of caterpillar is this and what does it turn into? A moth or a butterfly?” These and many other things capture my attention, captivate my thoughts, and often distract my “good intentions.”
I love the process of constant discovery. I love the inquisitive nature God has given me and the tools with which I can satisfy this constant curiosity. Something broken sparks an idea to re-purpose it. YEP! I can research those things endlessly too. In January, Pastor Andrew challenged us to give up something for the Lenten Season. I decided to give up playing games on my phone/iPad. The games I played were always of the puzzle sort, all requiring strategy and thought. Nonetheless, they were a complete and total waste of time. Deciding the best replacement was to exchange this for different devotionals – exchanging my games for God time. I am happy to say, I have not played my brain games since that day. I am not so happy to say that I did not make an even exchange to more God time.
Oh, and that Oreo Cow? It was a Belted Galloway. And the caterpillar? It was a Gulf Fritillary Caterpillar and it turns into a beautiful orange butterfly with black markings.
Characteristically on point, I began searching (Googling) for something to support my description of head knowledge vs. heart and soul knowledge. Clearly, this was no accident because I didn’t even realize this was a point of disconnect until the words began flowing from my fingertips. I had this devotional nearly done when I started filling in the missing pieces and then my thoughts went a completely different direction as I sat and spoke to God asking Him to reveal the right scriptures and words. The link below says, “Until we have revelation knowledge, the Bible will have little impact on our lives.” Revelation knowledge is in my mind akin to transformational grace. Grace has a much lesser impact on us until we allow His grace to transform our heart.
PERSONAL APPLICATION: I do not believe this quest for knowledge — the consistent researching to find an answer or looking for knowledge — is in any way bad. However, I do find myself being guilty of replacing one distraction for another. I even research Biblical topics. I love theology/theological discussions pondering what things were like during Bible times. But most of the time, even while searching for theological knowledge, I am not seeking closeness with Him. I realize we all connect with the Father in our own unique way. While learning and pondering things about Bible knowledge is connecting me with Biblical historical knowledge and thoughts, this is not how I connect with God. In some ways, this type of research is much the same as all of the other types of learning I like to do – certainly not in subject matter but the place the searching comes from: a book knowledge instead of a heart and soul knowledge. Although I do feel more connected to the Father with the newfound knowledge, it is not a place where I find myself being intimate, vulnerable, and connected. It is not a place where I find myself in a spirit of listening to Him. God created me with a constant thirst for knowledge. I just need to remember not to get top heavy with book knowledge and feed my heart and soul knowledge consistently with each new day.
PRAYER: Lord, please help me focus on daily renewal, consistently listening for your voice. Focusing on increasing my heart and soul knowledge that is fostered in an intimate connection with You. May I start each new day with a joy-filled heart and a gracious mind. May your light shine through me like a beacon of hope drawing others to You. I thank you for opening my eyes to heart and soul knowledge and showing me where I need to walk so that I keep my eyes on you. In Jesus’ name I pray, AMEN.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Sharon Sepik works in corporate finance and likes to create mosaic tile designs. She grew up in Huntsville, Alabama. She moved to Mount Juliet with her family in February 2014, after living in Orlando, Florida for 18 years. She has three awesome children: Elise (18), Isabelle (14) and DJ (8) and she is married to the best guy in the world – Dave Sepik.