“Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly.” (Colossians 3:16a NIV)
Just like you need physical food for physical strength, you need spiritual food for spiritual strength. The Bible describes itself as spiritual food — the water, milk, bread, and meat of our spiritual lives. It’s everything you need for sustenance.
If you were a construction contractor, you wouldn’t consider sending out a guy who hadn’t eaten anything in two weeks. If you were a commander in the Army, you wouldn’t send a person into battle who hadn’t eaten in a month. Right? We need to feed ourselves to have the strength to accomplish the tasks ahead of us.
You’re not going to have much success in winning the spiritual battles you face if you’re starving yourself to death. That’s why we need to feed ourselves on the Word of God.
Unlike eating physical food, whenever I feed on the Word, I get even hungrier. The more I taste and see how good God is, the more I want.
The Bible says in Colossians 3:16, “Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly” (NIV). Paul is telling us to let the Bible take up residence in our lives in a rich, profound, and life-giving way.
So how do we feed ourselves on the Word of God and allow that to happen?
- Receive the Word with your ears. Commit yourself to go to church and listen to God’s Word being preached.
- Read the Word with your eyes. As I said, having a Bible in your house is not going to bless your life. You have to have the Bible in your heart.
- Research the Word with your hands and mouth. When studying the Word of God, keep a pencil in your hand. Write down what God teaches. Talk about what you’re discovering with other believers in a small-group environment.
- Reflect on the Word with your mind. Think about and chew on God’s Word.
- Remember the Word with your heart. You’ll rarely have a Bible with you when you need it. Commit God’s Word to memory.
Talk About It
- Are you feeding yourself by following all of the points above, or do you normally just stop after the first? What changes do you need to make in your life so that you are spiritually nourished?
- Do you write down what God teaches you? What you are memorizing from Scripture?
- What spiritual battle are you fighting today? Have you turned to God’s Word for sustenance?
Rick Warren on Muslims, Evangelism, and Missions
Pastor Rick often says, “You never win your enemies to Christ, only your friends.” He's gone past the limits some believers are willing to broach in order to form friendships and love a world in need of Jesus. Because this part of Pastor Rick’s ministry is sometimes misunderstood, we offer this interview where he clearly explains his beliefs and the biblical foundation for reaching out to those who do not believe in Christ, even if it means going places where the Gospel is never preached.
Rick Warren is the founding pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif., one of America's largest and most influential churches. Rick is author of the New York Times bestseller The Purpose Driven Life. His book, The Purpose Driven Church, was named one of the 100 Christian books that changed the 20th century. He is also founder of Pastors.com, a global Internet community for pastors.
This devotional © 2012 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.