I love to walk in the woods and when I walk it’s often on the same trail. You would think it would get boring walking that same trail over and over again and yet it doesn’t. It seems like every time I walk I notice something new.
Part of this is because the woods is a living place and things are constantly changing. But I think the other thing that always makes this same trail so interesting is just that there is so much to see. Even after walking this same trail over and over again, suddenly I will notice something that I didn’t remember seeing before.
And, of course, there are familiar things that I notice over and over again, like the stump that often has ferns or other green plants growing out of it and that always makes me think about that verse of scripture about a branch coming up from the stump of Jesse.
And in my walk today I was thinking about how this is so much like spending time in the Bible. Sometimes it seems like we walk the same trails over and over again – listen to the same stories again and again. And yet, if we remember that the Bible is a living thing – the living word – we can see how God can help us to see it freshly day after day.
When I walk in the woods I am most likely to notice things when I slow down and pay attention. The Bible is the same way. If you read quickly, just trying to get through a chapter, you may miss something. But when you pause to walk slowly through your scripture reading – when you pay attention – God may open your eyes and your ears to something beautiful and meaningful that God wants to share with you today.