No one told me to read my Bible, but I did. I bought them with the few dollars given to me by my grandmother. She often took us to the dollar store in those days. And because there's only so many toys I could actually want there, it was easy to add the Bible to my shopping basket.
But why the Bible?
It's a question I've been asking myself for years. What was it about the Bible that attracted me to it? Why was I so keen on knowing God?
I could be wrong about this but I believe it had something to do with my parents divorce. I don't think it registered when they told me they were separating. I remember sitting with them at the table in our little apartment. When I saw my dad leave with his things on a U-Haul, it began to sink in. It was like the scene on Land Before Time with the earthquakes separating fledgling dinosaurs from their parents and Little Foot's mother dying. Yes, it was that heart wrenching. No one literally died, but there was great loss. Nothing would ever be the same, and there was no valley of promise to reach where my family would be together again.
It was not the separation itself that troubled my heart so, it was all the events afterwards that cemented the reality that life was not as good as I thought it was. Something was horribly wrong with the world, and, worse, something seemed to be horribly wrong with me.
My heart was broken. I no longer felt confident that I was loveable. I didn't believe I could be known and accepted. I was insecure in my identity. It was like the anchor of my life had been loosened and I was just bobbing around, trying to keep my head above water.
I needed truth. I knew something was wrong in the world and in my life and I needed the truth to make sense of things. What is this life?
And, don't get me wrong, my mother and father loved me. But the cares of this world made it difficult for me, as a young child, to perceive their love rightly. I held tightly to how I wanted to receive love. I wanted things to go back to the way they were.
And so I bought cheap KJV Bibles with tiny print. I started and stopped, started and stopped, and never dropped the desire to know God.
I even had a children's Bible and learned the Bible stories most kids learn in Sunday School. I learned because I wanted to learn, but my questions remained unanswered for a long time. What is this life? Where do I fit? Will I ever know the deep love I felt before my parents divorced? Will things ever be made right?
I may never know why my parents got a divorce, why their relationship was beyond repair, but one thing I do know is that it created in me a need to know my Creator, my Savior, and the Lover of my soul.
My imperfect parents (we all have them) helped me fall into the arms of the Perfect Loving Father. Their divorce drove me to reading Scripture at age 8, 9, 10 years old. And it ultimately led to my salvation in Christ Jesus.
And so now I can say with sincerity, "I thank you, Lord, for my parents' divorce. You have worked much good through it, calling me to yourself and giving me a home in your Kingdom. Without it, I may not have become so passionate about your word, about grace and truth in Jesus. I would not have chosen this path, but you are far more precious than my family staying together. And if being broken means coming to know you, then so be it."
When did you first take interest in the things of God?
What painful circumstance has He used to draw you to Himself?
Comment below and let's praise Him together for his work in our lives!