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His Voice & My Vittles

I’m now in my 70’s and STILL embracing life principles from scripture I wish to God some mentor had helped me embrace when I was in my teens. My life would have unfolded for the better if I had lived out those principles in my youth. One example is found in Job: “Neither have I gone back from the commandment of his lips; I have esteemed the words of his mouth more than my necessary food” (Job 23:12). 

The words “his lips” and “his mouth” remind us there were no inspired, written scriptures at the time Job lived. In fact, ALL the OT saints that walked with God before Moses began writing Genesis heard the VOICE of God either audibly and or in their spirits. The verb “esteemed” means “to treasure up, to hoard.” And when you read the book of Job, it’s clear Job placed a higher value on the VOICE of God needed to sustain his spiritual life than he did the VITTLES needed to sustain his physical life. 

Unlike Job of old, we have in our possession a collection of 66 inspired-preserved books we call the Bible, the scriptures. Those who expose themselves to, read and ingest these inspired words enable themselves to hear the VOICE of God just as surely as did Job, conversing with him and treasuring those interactions MORE than their necessary food. 

Now how does this principle translate into practical obedience? For me, it finds expression in reading two or three chapters of scripture in the morning and meditating thereupon BEFORE eating breakfast. I realize in our fast-paced world, time is at a premium, especially the waking hours as we bathe, eat, dress for school and work. Many might take the suggestion of ‘Scripture First’ as just not very workable for the busy believer. 

But I would remind us of Jesus’ disciplined life: “And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed” (Mark 1:35). Jesus was a VERY BUSY man! Yet he SO esteemed the need to talk to the Father—hearing the Father’s VOICE and the Father hearing his—that he determined to get this done A GREAT WHILE BEFORE DAY. So would you be willing to set your alarm for, say, 5am instead of 6am in order to get this done in your life? 

If only I had cemented such conviction in my heart, implemented the truth from Job while in my teens, my life would have taken a much different, a much better course. The bottom line: It’s NEVER too late for a believer to get his priorities right. 

Whether you’re in your teems or in your 70’s, placing the proper esteem on the WORDS of God, desiring to hear HIS VOICE before eating YOUR VITTLES is always a move in the right direction, one we know is Christ-like and pleasing to the Father.


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