by: Pastor Tim, Pastor of Discipleship
Is honey sweet? Most everyone would surely answer, “Yes, of course!” But how do you know that honey is sweet? One person might never have tasted it themselves (too bad for them!), but have been told that honey is sweet and believed it. This is one way of knowing. But you know that there is another way – the person might have tasted honey. It only takes a little drop of that golden syrupy liquid on the tongue to know that it is sweet. No one has to tell them. They “just know.”
Does it matter which way you know? If you’ve never tasted it for yourself, you might be able to be convinced by a good arguer that honey is not sweet. But once you have tasted it for yourself, the best convincing in the world will not convince you that it is not sweet.
Did you know that the Bible compares the words of God to honey? Psalm 119:103 says, “How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!” How do we “taste” God’s words? Not by ripping a page out of your Bible and munching on it. We taste it by reading it with our eyes and comprehending it with our mind. We are not merely to know that God’s word is sweet because the pastor or Sunday school teacher told us, but are to know that it is sweet because we have tasted it for ourselves.
Brothers and sisters, for many of you it has been a long time since you have eaten more than a tiny nibble of God’s word. Why is that? No one has to tell you to eat your favorite foods. Your appetite keeps reminding you. Has it been a long time since you have tasted the Bible as sweet? Have you lost your appetite for God’s word of life?
Some of you might be thinking, “I’ve tried reading the Scriptures. They just don’t taste sweet to me. So, I stopped reading.” For many, movies taste sweet, video games taste sweet, relationships taste sweet, football, hunting, shopping…all taste sweet. But not God’s word. What should you do? When we find God’s word to not be sweet to the taste buds of our hearts, the problem is not with God’s word, but with our taste buds. Don’t let yourself believe otherwise. God charges me to shepherd your soul. So, allow me to prescribe two things for you. First, pray to the Lord of your taste buds to make his word sweet to you. And don’t stop asking until he grants your request. Second, don’t stop eating. You’ll never taste the sweetness of the Bible without reading it for yourself. Combining these two, day by day keep praying for God to make his word sweet to you and keep reading his word.
Perhaps the most helpful thing you can do for the health of your soul is to be regularly reading God’s word. Jesus said it was more important to the life of our soul than bread is to the life of our body. Just like other areas of your life (exercise, for example), your best resolve won’t be enough to actually execute what you know to be good for you. You need a plan. In 2021, would you be willing to read the Bible for 20-25 minutes a day? If so, you can read through the entire Bible in the year. If that sounds like too much for you, then find a plan that fits. FBC offers a few different printed Bible reading plans located on the wall next to the Welcome Center at church or at fbcmedford.com/bible-reading-plans.
If you would like help, I would be so happy to coach you in this. If you have any questions or difficulties, please contact me. I can even give you a custom reading plan to suit your pace and schedule. Call me! May your soul have its healthy and delightful (sweet!) fill of God’s word in 2021, for your joy and God’s glory!