Five years ago my husband surprised me on my birthday with a new iPad 2. I had not asked for it and knew little about one, but it didn’t take me long to learn to use it and ever since then I have used it more and more. For a little while now it has been sort of chugging along and at least once it refused to turn on. My trip to our Apple store and a diagnostic test let me know the battery was no longer charging completely or effectively. They managed to get it going for me that day. Their advice? Keep using it until it dies.
That was some months ago. Some days it seemed to take longer to for it to wake up, but it is still working. Last week, however, I thought it was on its deathbed. It was plugged in to recharge, but over an hour or so the battery indicator said the percentage of charge was actually going down instead of up. I was certain this meant it was really dying this time.
I told my husband and started looking online at models and prices if I were to replace it.
My sweet husband is ever the practical man and asked me if I was sure that it was plugged in. I assured him that it was setting right on the desk with the end of the cord plugged into the iPad and since we had not been out of town I knew it was plugged into the power strip on the opposite end.
I kept looking and comparing new models of iPads and wishing I could enjoy the speed of a new one while realizing I didn’t want to add that expense after the outlay for a new HVAC system a few months ago.
Just then my sweet husband came into the room and informed me that it was charging just fine. He also added that the end of the charging cord that goes into the power strip was not fully engaged into the outlet.
No, I had not checked on that except to give the power strip a quick look under the back of the desk where it is located. It looked like it was plugged in from the angle I was looking. As I walked into the den again, sure enough the battery showed it had already charged ten percent more than when I had last looked at it.
I was relieved we didn’t need to try to find money in the budget for a new one even though I had already been excited over the new models.
As my husband and I stood there talking and trying to figure out how it had become disengaged enough to disrupt recharging and still look as if it was plugged in, I began to think it was an example of what can happen to us in our spiritual lives.
As believers we can be in church every Sunday, involved in ministry, and fellowship, and have a personal quiet time at least some of the time. Then we start to notice we are feeling more spiritually dry. The sermons no longer challenge or inspire us and we too often just go through the motions during worship. When we look for an explanation we might decide we are just tired, but maybe we are really not plugged into the source and hadn’t noticed.
Which source am I referring to? Certainly Jesus is the source we need as well as the connection with the whole body of Christ, worship, and prayer. But we may still be missing the true source that gives us a consistent flow of connection.
The Word is the big power source and in our busy lives, it can also be one of the things that start to get short-changed or set aside. Something happens one day and we never get to it. Maybe a couple of days later we only manage a verse or a quick read through our favorite devotional. Little by little without realizing it, we start to lose our connection to the life-giving sustaining power of time in the Bible.
If I were to ask for a show of hands out there, I am sure if no one was looking we could all raise our hands. We can rationalize that we are getting the Word in the devotional we are reading or in the worship chorus we have cued up in the car, but from my own experience I know it’s not the same.
I hear a lot of talk about how dark the world around us appears to be and how many challenges we are facing. How did Jesus manage it all when He was here? He responded to all of it by speaking the truth from scripture. He wasn’t carrying around a Bible (It hadn’t been compiled yet.) and I don’t think or hear He was carrying around a scroll. He knew it because He had spent time reading it so it was a part of Him when He needed it. It gave Him direction.
What about us? For me, when I am not getting a steady diet in God’s Word, I start to get malnourished.
Two passages in Psalm 119 speak to its value and importance:
Psalm 119:105 NIV “Your word is a lamp for my feet,
a light on my path.
Psalm 119:11 NIV: “I have hidden your word in my heart
that I might not sin against you.”
It’s a new day at the beginning of a new week, how is your connection?
Our Lord’s words are there…a lamp and a light, a weapon and protection against the shadows and darkness that would seek to overtake us. He wants to speak to us and anchor us in His truth, the truth of His Word.