I read because I know myself.
Loneliness is one of the tools the enemy likes to assault me with on a regular basis.
Left unchecked, I begin to isolate myself and focus more on what I lack than what I truly have.
Which is why I place a high priority on the Word.
When I read the Word, I see the real people whose history God recorded there, along with His interaction with them.
But most importantly, I see His love and desire for each one.
Whether they fell hard and fast, like David or Samson, or reluctantly followed someone else’s lead, Hagar or Bathsheba.
The fact He included their stories in His story shows that each one of His people matter, to Him. And to us.
Because He shows us the whole story of failure and isolation, hopelessness and loss – from the other side where He awaits.
Take Hannah, for example in 1 Samuel Chapters 1 and 2.
A woman longing for a child, longing for a visual reminder of the love she has for her husband.
A husband who doesn’t understand why his love isn’t enough for her to move past her desire for a child.
Which isn’t happening in the timing she expected.
It has been years of waiting and yearning, multiple painful barbs from the other woman in her husband’s wife, and not being understood by her spouse.
I can relate to the angst situations like this can cause within.
Instead of giving in to the despair, Hannah turns to God, heads to His house, and desperately pours out her heart before Him, in an honest prayer from the depth of her gut. Silently, she mouths the words to the One who can hear without sound.
And the priest on duty accuses her of being drunk, mistaken about her fervor in prayer! (vs 14)
There must have been a moment her eyes bugged out in astonishment before she explained she was praying to the priest. (vs 15-16)
But what happened next showed both Hannah and I that God hears us.
The priest Eli not only blessed her, he added his prayer to hers and invited God to answer her prayer.
And God did.
He gave hope to Hanna that day, because first and foremost her prayer was recognized.
She was heard, and seen.
God used Eli to show Hannah His awareness of her situation.
Hannah’ response was thankfulness and peace.
God’s response set the plan for what she desired most underway.
She was no longer alone,unseen or unheard in her situation.
But the reality is, she never was.
And neither are we.
That is just one example of why I read the Word.
Over and over God reveals Himself to be with me, for me, preparing the way for me, restoring me, and loving me.
I am never alone.
So I will keep reading His Word and listening for His voice to speak truth to me, and put my own internal voice on the back burner of my mind, where it belongs.
Beloved, I read the Word to remind myself that I am not alone and I am loved.
May you too quench your thrist and hunger for connection by allowing God to speak to you through His Word as well.
For the Author of this book is also its living Guide, and knows best where to point you for the answers and connection you seek.