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The Bible: One instruction manual worth reading

posted Feb 2, 2010, 7:55 PM by Bowmansville UMC
(Excerpted from the Lancaster Bee)
In a small-group setting in church this week, the topic of following instructions emerged, after one woman described a few complex Cristmas presents her husband had just purchased for their grandson.  The crux of our conversation was that very few people like to follow instructions.
Why do we avoid this helpful advice?  Perhaps it is because we think we know how to assemble the swing set or laminated end table or operate a new cell phone without it.  Do we believe we are smarted than the manufacturer?  Do we take offense in the belief that we know where each of the dozens of pieces of the Barbie three-story dream townhouse is supposed to fit?  Even the words "some assembly required" strike fear in my heart and force me to continue to look for other options.
Recently, I upgraded my cell phone from one I had truly mastered to one that continues to frustrate my limited knowledge of such devices.  When I cannot discern how to reply to a text message or even how to turn the phone completely off, I usually drive over to the phone store, humiliating myself with said doltish questions.  (You see, I did have an instruction manual, but accidentally discarded the English version and held onto the Spanish one, and my four years of high school Spanish classes are not adequate for translating such technical information.)  Perhaps this phone store would consider a drive-through window where such questions may be answered without the customer having to park the car and walk into the store.  On second thought, I am reminded that in a fast-food setting, one can easily overhear the orders being spoken in the drive-through line.  I am now picturing sending and entire store into hilarity by asking, "How do I access my voicemail again?"
There is one area of my life where I do my best to read and apply the instruction manual.  God's Word for my life, The Bible.  It is one instruction manual worth reading.  To obey God begins with humility (2 Kings 5:9-15), leads to peace (2 Chr. 14:1-6), comes from a true love for God (John 14:21), must be timely (Num. 14:40-44) and is the key to living as Jesus did (1 John 2:6).  The Psalmist wrote: Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path.  This Book will never need to be added to, subtracted from, become out of date or out of print.  I thank God for His Living Word to me.
-Pastor Beth