BY KATIE WENCLEWICZ
I think that most of us can say that the struggle is really real. Throughout the five weeks of this sermon series, we’ve been challenged and educated when it comes to our physical and mental health. While these topics are not your every-day “church topics,” I think our pastors knocked it out of the park when relating everything back to God’s goodness and plan for us.
When I talk to my small group or even fiancé, it’s so encouraging to see how we not only take away different things, but also how we are constantly learning new things. Whether it’s through the challenge to find a new workout routine or even cooking at home more than going out – this series is what I think a lot of us needed. Sometimes people around us, who don’t follow Jesus, think that being a Christian is “easy.” If only that were true. Though this series, if anything, we’ve all realized that being a Christian can sometimes be a struggle. We all hurt, go through challenges, and conquer mountains in our lives. It’s nice to look at others in the series all while throwing our hands up and saying, “Y’ALL THE STRUGGLE IS REAL. WE NEED JESUS.”
I’ve grown up in the church my whole life. I watched my dad teach Sunday School classes and my mom read my brother and I Bible stories before bed. I went from a “church-kid” immediately to a “private-school kid.” While I was labeled, I couldn’t love my church and school any more. Through those many precious moments – I grew more in stature and wisdom when it came to the Bible. My teachers were constantly presenting new provoking thoughts that challenged what I believed and why I believed it. The Bible was never a book to me, but rather a roadmap to righteousness.
Here’s the thing though: I still struggle, more than ever, to actually open my Bible every day and make sure that I am reading the word and growing. As I’ve grown older, time plays the biggest part in my lack of reading and I’m the only one to blame. It’s also the fact that sometimes the Bible can be complicated and all that learning hurts my brain. I know I’m not alone, though. I hear so many Christians talk about how we let time go bye and before we know it we haven’t opened our Bible in weeks. Whether you’re in a stage of being single or having two children – we all can find excuses or reasons on why our time is scarce. Whenever I try to tell myself my own excuses, I literally have to speak out loud, “BUT YOU CREATED ME.”
I’m with you, Grace. Time is of the essence, but our creator deserves more. I think this weekend’s sermon was the perfect explanation of why. Just as we are seeking out that kara and inner-peace, we must make sure that we are also seeking out knowledge and making sure that we are growing mentally.
I loved when Tim brought up, this past weekend, how it is so important to grow mentally. For some, it’s reading the Bible. For others, it’s studying and reading publications that are solely for one’s career. Whatever it might be, we are to never stop growing. All truth is important and all truth is God’s truth. Just as cooking meals and seeking out new recipes takes time, it also takes time to discipline our minds in areas that God has created in us to find most important.
We reflected weeks ago that when we are mentally strong, we are the most impactful for the kingdom. While some of us love reading novels and scholastic journals, we must never forget the importance of reading and growing in the Bible. We are to exercise our faith by exercising our eyes on the one thing that can make us truly better.
I think, along with time, some of us hate studying – even if it is for subjects we totally love. Here is the thing though: you can’t grow if you don’t learn. While the struggle may be real with studying, you can overcome this! It’s worth the effort and time, I promise. Just as God made our brains, let us worship and glorify Him by expanding them with the knowledge he has placed before us.