Courtesy: Office for Evangelisation Diocese of Broken Bay .
Each Sunday as Christians we are called to make time and gather to hear the Word of God and worship as One Body. Further to this, each year the Church designates one Sunday as Bible Sunday, which aims to draw our attention more intentionally to the Bible.
Bible Sunday is a reminder of the importance the Bible plays in our life and the lives of other faithful. It encourages us to intentionally plan time in our day, taking time to read the Word. The Bible is the story of our salvation, written to us and for us, by a loving Father.
Being made in the image and likeness of God we have an intrinsic desire to be united to God, in relationship, and this is a continuous journey which blossoms over time. The relationship requires nurturing and creates a foundation in which we are able to grow and thrive spiritually. We grow in relationship by intentionally meeting and encountering God throughout our day. This ‘meeting’ occurs in various ways including silence, prayer and Scripture.
It is when we open the Bible that God speaks to us! Engaging with Scripture, through words and stories inspired by God, we are able to hear and reflect upon what is being said to us. Though the Bible was written long ago, it is alive and active, and continues to give life. The Bible is a love story written to us from a God who loves us unconditionally and speaks a message which is outside of time, continually reaching out to us; through reading the Bible we can hear our Father speaking to us most clearly. Scripture gives us, the Church, nourishment and strength to go forward building and growing in relationship as he “comes to lovingly meet his children and talks with them” (CCC 104).
An ancient form of reading Scripture is the lectio divina method. Lectio divina is the reading of Scripture while having an awareness of being in the presence of God, gently listening for a word or phrase in which God is speaking to us. This practice can be done alone or with others. When done with others, people can be invited to share the word or phrase which spoke to them. More information about this method of reading Scripture can be found here. Another idea for when reading your bible and passing onto the next generation can be found in the ‘Listen’ section below.
Another way to engage with Scripture is through the many digital platforms which exist today that make Scripture so accessible. Apps such as Pray as You Go allow audible readings of the day and reflections, on the run. Bible apps such as YouVersion provides the Bible at your fingertips as well as other useful resources within the app to complement Bible reading; look for the NRSV translation within the app. Podcasts can be used to delve deeper into Scripture; shows such as the Lanky Guys look at Scripture in unique ways.Father Peter Mussett and Dr Scott Powell draw meaning out of the weekly Sunday Scriptures.
The Bible has been a prominent fixture in many people’s homes, adorning bedside tables and bookshelves for centuries. At times with the busyness of life, this life-giving book can collect dust as other things take priority. Let this Bible Sunday be a reminder of the relationship which is on offer and allow God the opportunity to speak to you through the Living Words he so desires you to hear today.
Dear Lord, I desire to enter into your sacred Word more deeply. May the Holy Spirit touch my heart as I listen to the words you wish to speak to me this day. Help me to take the message with me through my day so that I may continue to encounter you and others may encounter you through me. Amen.