In my first season of writing, I have dealt with marital intimacy, struggling through life’s situations, the importance of rest in the Lord, the joy and struggle of motherhood, the discovery of truly radical grace, the fascination with the marvelous light of that grace, and the discomfort of transitions. Not too bad for 2 years of blogging, if I say so myself. 10 devotionals plus two journals published equals Season 1.
Today however, marks the beginning of Season 2. We are embarking on a year-long journey through the Word of God together. We call this journey 365 Life. 365: Because it is a journey that takes 365 steps around the calendar. Life: Because those daily steps toward God bring us the abundant life Jesus spoke of in John 10:10. “The thief comes only to steal, kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.”
In John 6:22-59 Jesus tells us that He is the bread of life, the manna from heaven, sent down for us to feast upon and to have a life everlasting. In this passage Jesus, a.k.a the Word (John 1:1), refers to himself as the bread from heaven, or mana. When we inspect that particular story from Exodus 16, we find some key details for 365 life.
“Behold, I am about to rain bread from heaven for you, and the people shall go out and gather a day’s portion every day, that I may test them whether they will walk in my Law or not. On the sixth day, when they prepare what they bring in, it will be twice as much as they gather daily.” (Ex 16:4-5)
For you- these daily readings are for you. They’re not you serving God, they are Him serving you a banquet that brings life!
Go out- the Israelites had to get up, put on their shoes and gather the manna. While God is providing the feast, we have to make the choice to indulge in it.
A day’s portion every day- just like you eat food daily to stay alive, so too we must feast on the Word of God to stay alive. While there are many different ways to prepare the meal and to eat it, God has brought you to my restaurant where you never really know what shape the manna will take, but you will know it’ll be the same amount of reading every day and that you’ll walk away full and satisfied from the Scriptures.
Test them- in the Garden of Eden Adam and Eve chose to believe Satan’s word over God’s. To this very day that is still the test humanity is taking. Whose words will you believe today? By reminding yourself daily of God’s words it is so much easier to take every thought captive and toss out the words from the enemy. Life is a test, so let’s study like we want to pass!
The sixth day- last season I did not get all the way through the Bible. I had a plan. I thought it was great. But it had one huge flaw, me! I had committed to reading and writing all 365 days of the next year. I failed to take into account my human frailties, my own un-reliability and most of all a day of rest! In describing the manna God said, “when they prepare what they bring in, it will be twice as much as they gather daily.” So although we may be reading the same amount of words on the 6th day, it will last us twice as long. The Sabbath principal.
“At evening you shall know that it was the LORD who brought you out of Egypt, and in the morning you shall see the glory of the LORD, because he has heard your grumbling against the LORD.” Exodus 16:6-7
These are our parameters for the next year. I will post the complete 365 Life plan as soon as I get it all typed, but for now here are the first 56 days.