Photo: Keith Gandy
Debbie and I just saw alligators and crocodiles in Florida - the only place in the world where both are to be found in the wild. Here is my observation: Christians are like alligators in this sense - we are cold-blooded by nature. Not calculating or carnivorous, just unable to generate our own spiritual heat.
Our spiritual temperature is regulated by the proximity to the Word of God. Listening to sermons has never been easier with Christian Radio, church podcasts, etc. Churches and various ministries used to monetize sermons - ie. charge people to buy a cassette, CD or download a sermon. Thanks to Craig Groeschel and others, the landscape has changed - now everything except seminars are free at most church sites.
Still, listening to others can only assist so far. They make great appetizers, but a true disciple must devour the Word for himself/herself. Dig deep, study, cross-reference, make copious notes. Word studies, themes throughout all 66 books.
Everyone can experience a warming of the heart, when time is spent in the Son. God communicates: the spoken Word, Jesus is named the living Word and we hold the completed written Word.
My favorite pattern in this season of life is to bullet point every chapter of a book. I like the birds-eye overview of the entire epistle, making chapter divisions, then general outline points of the content.
Be enriched and do not allow your heart to grow cold, calloused and weary. Find a method that works for you and devour more than Our Daily Bread bites. As good and inspirational as the guide is, let's face it, the devotionals are spiritual twinkies. Explore for yourself so that you can give a clear answer for Christ (Col. 4:4) - which is how we ought to speak.