Thoughts

An old friend

February 9, 2008

I found an old friend today. Remembering what we walked through, how I was carried and reprimanded through the words and moments we shared. Those times when I had had enough alone time and desperately needed fellowship. When the only voice answering my cries for help were those of the Psalmist David and the broken voice of Jeremiah. When the encouragement of a mother was through the words of Naomi and Ruth. When the only counsel I could rely on was found in the Epistles and Paul would whisper encouragement to me from thousands of years ago. I am shaken anew as I remember those first few days finding out how beautiful my Lord is after 18 years of misunderstanding His call.

Remember first love? Often it looks like this. It did for me. Broken, examined, underlined, marked up and devoured.

1st-love-edge-copy.jpg

Then, this was all I had and this was all I knew.  Now, beyond the online and computer based study tools (ad infinidum) I have at least 4 other Bibles and 2 entire shelves of study aids and books. All so pretty.  All kept so neat and organized.   All the information.  Just when I need it.  Compartmentalized.  How often do I look at a commentary on a verse before I pray and ask the Holy Spirit, the Ruach Ha Kodesh, to guide me?

I wonder… Should the manual for our life really be kept pristine? Should the tools we rely on to attempt to comprehend the voice of Adon Olam, the Lord of the world and the King of my life, Melekh  Chayai, be kept neatly embossed and shiny? Or should it look more like our date books and planners? Stuffed full, hemmed in with post-its and scribbles.

I suppose this only shows where I really live.

  • Reuben

    A Bible that is falling apart belongs to someone who is not.

    You can have those things rebound, you know that right?

  • Reuben

    A Bible that is falling apart belongs to someone who is not.

    You can have those things rebound, you know that right?

  • But why would I want to?

  • But why would I want to?

  • Reuben

    I had to do it to my old parallel Bible. It was a hard cover, KJV, AMP, NAS, NIV, great Bible, know where everything is in it. I had it wraped in duct tape. It ooked horrible. I took it to a guy that my old youth pastor recomended, had it rebound in super soft thick leather. I was pleased.

    I do miss the duct tape look though.

  • Reuben

    I had to do it to my old parallel Bible. It was a hard cover, KJV, AMP, NAS, NIV, great Bible, know where everything is in it. I had it wraped in duct tape. It ooked horrible. I took it to a guy that my old youth pastor recomended, had it rebound in super soft thick leather. I was pleased.

    I do miss the duct tape look though.

  • Reuben

    I had to do it to my old parallel Bible. It was a hard cover, KJV, AMP, NAS, NIV, great Bible, know where everything is in it. I had it wraped in duct tape. It ooked horrible. I took it to a guy that my old youth pastor recomended, had it rebound in super soft thick leather. I was pleased.

    I do miss the duct tape look though.

  • mike in oregon.

    Part of a very deep work that God did in my life 11-12 years ago included moving us to another church. The pastor taught from NIV (I don’t get hung up on translations, that ‘s not where I’m going) and decided to change over to the NKJV when we started in Matthew. The church got a killer deal on NKJV wide margins, so I bought one.

    Wore out the cover, worse than yours ,in about seven years. I had so many good notes in the margins that I got that Bible recovered. Sent it to a guy in the south, although I’ve heard there’s a guy in Southern Oregon that does nice work. It’s the Bible I teach from today, it often reminds me of that deep work that God did in my life and the people he surrounded me with while He was doing it.

  • mike in oregon.

    Part of a very deep work that God did in my life 11-12 years ago included moving us to another church. The pastor taught from NIV (I don’t get hung up on translations, that ‘s not where I’m going) and decided to change over to the NKJV when we started in Matthew. The church got a killer deal on NKJV wide margins, so I bought one.

    Wore out the cover, worse than yours ,in about seven years. I had so many good notes in the margins that I got that Bible recovered. Sent it to a guy in the south, although I’ve heard there’s a guy in Southern Oregon that does nice work. It’s the Bible I teach from today, it often reminds me of that deep work that God did in my life and the people he surrounded me with while He was doing it.

  • mike in oregon.

    Part of a very deep work that God did in my life 11-12 years ago included moving us to another church. The pastor taught from NIV (I don’t get hung up on translations, that ‘s not where I’m going) and decided to change over to the NKJV when we started in Matthew. The church got a killer deal on NKJV wide margins, so I bought one.

    Wore out the cover, worse than yours ,in about seven years. I had so many good notes in the margins that I got that Bible recovered. Sent it to a guy in the south, although I’ve heard there’s a guy in Southern Oregon that does nice work. It’s the Bible I teach from today, it often reminds me of that deep work that God did in my life and the people he surrounded me with while He was doing it.

  • Hey Mike, I use two NKJVs. My latest Bible was the “Word For Today” Bible, and the MacArthur NKJV with the cool Blue and Black leather binding. I use both of them some. Kinda sad. I just attached to the old parallel Bible I have, and like I said, had it recovered, because you grow attached to things like that when you have spent so many hours, days, weeks with it.

  • Hey Mike, I use two NKJVs. My latest Bible was the “Word For Today” Bible, and the MacArthur NKJV with the cool Blue and Black leather binding. I use both of them some. Kinda sad. I just attached to the old parallel Bible I have, and like I said, had it recovered, because you grow attached to things like that when you have spent so many hours, days, weeks with it.

  • Hey Mike, I use two NKJVs. My latest Bible was the “Word For Today” Bible, and the MacArthur NKJV with the cool Blue and Black leather binding. I use both of them some. Kinda sad. I just attached to the old parallel Bible I have, and like I said, had it recovered, because you grow attached to things like that when you have spent so many hours, days, weeks with it.

  • The Word for Today and The MacArthur study Bibles. They’re two totally different works. Both are on my shelf and are two of the best in my opinion.

  • The Word for Today and The MacArthur study Bibles. They’re two totally different works. Both are on my shelf and are two of the best in my opinion.

  • The Word for Today and The MacArthur study Bibles. They’re two totally different works. Both are on my shelf and are two of the best in my opinion.

  • Jen

    Heidi, I loved this. Your “first love” – I love the memories that first well-worn Bible brings back.

  • Jen

    Heidi, I loved this. Your “first love” – I love the memories that first well-worn Bible brings back.

  • Jen

    Heidi, I loved this. Your “first love” – I love the memories that first well-worn Bible brings back.

  • I have an old Bible that looks strikingly similar to the one in your picture. That book and I went through a lot together. I’ve never felt quite as comfortable with any of the Bibles I’ve had since then.

  • I have an old Bible that looks strikingly similar to the one in your picture. That book and I went through a lot together. I’ve never felt quite as comfortable with any of the Bibles I’ve had since then.

  • I have an old Bible that looks strikingly similar to the one in your picture. That book and I went through a lot together. I’ve never felt quite as comfortable with any of the Bibles I’ve had since then.

  • I love this post and all of the comments. I have a story like all of you, too.

    My mother bought me a Bible for my birthday last year. I was very glad I live so far from her and she didn’t see me open it. I was disappointed and even, for a few seconds, hurt when I opened it. After about two seconds, I realized it was just a simple misunderstanding and also a wonderful act of love and thoughtfulness.

    She had heard me talk so many times about how I had to “retire” my Thompson Chain Study Bible that I had carried for 20 years because it was simply too old to go to church with me any more. I had to put it away until I can have it rebound, for love’s sake. It’s the only material thing I own that I consider truly priceless.

    So she bought me one just like it for my birthday.

    She misunderstood. I don’t need another Thompson Chain Study Bible. I have one. And you can’t order one like mine. It’s the only one that exists.

    I spent over twenty (formative) years studying with that particular book, marking it up, recording notes and, most important, crying into it as I prayed.

    I explained all of that to her, we understand each other about that now and she (against my protests) bought me an additional Bible that I DID want, as a replacement birthday gift.

    Here’s a capper to the story for you:
    That was last fall and when I was at Mom’s for Christmas, she gave me the very first Bible I ever owned. My Grandmother bought it for me for my birthday when I was five or six. It was also the first Bible I ever preached from.

    Yes, I preached from a pulpit, to a congregation, when I was eight. I have a recording around somewhere but you’ll have to beg.

    Mom simply said, “You probably need to have this. It’s the first Bible you ever owned.”

  • I love this post and all of the comments. I have a story like all of you, too.

    My mother bought me a Bible for my birthday last year. I was very glad I live so far from her and she didn’t see me open it. I was disappointed and even, for a few seconds, hurt when I opened it. After about two seconds, I realized it was just a simple misunderstanding and also a wonderful act of love and thoughtfulness.

    She had heard me talk so many times about how I had to “retire” my Thompson Chain Study Bible that I had carried for 20 years because it was simply too old to go to church with me any more. I had to put it away until I can have it rebound, for love’s sake. It’s the only material thing I own that I consider truly priceless.

    So she bought me one just like it for my birthday.

    She misunderstood. I don’t need another Thompson Chain Study Bible. I have one. And you can’t order one like mine. It’s the only one that exists.

    I spent over twenty (formative) years studying with that particular book, marking it up, recording notes and, most important, crying into it as I prayed.

    I explained all of that to her, we understand each other about that now and she (against my protests) bought me an additional Bible that I DID want, as a replacement birthday gift.

    Here’s a capper to the story for you:
    That was last fall and when I was at Mom’s for Christmas, she gave me the very first Bible I ever owned. My Grandmother bought it for me for my birthday when I was five or six. It was also the first Bible I ever preached from.

    Yes, I preached from a pulpit, to a congregation, when I was eight. I have a recording around somewhere but you’ll have to beg.

    Mom simply said, “You probably need to have this. It’s the first Bible you ever owned.”

  • digital cowboy,

    I did teach when I was about that age. I doubt that there are any recordings of it. My father was the pastor of a HUGE Pentecostal church, and I guess folks expected that I would follow his footsteps, and they started me off early. Probably around 8. That lasted till I was about 15, then drugs, skateboards, and snowboards consumed my life. I have the Bible that I was given way back then. It has my name in gold on the black leather cover, and notes from when I was probably 5. Thompson Chain Reference KJV. I dig it up every now and then. Sure takes me back.

  • digital cowboy,

    I did teach when I was about that age. I doubt that there are any recordings of it. My father was the pastor of a HUGE Pentecostal church, and I guess folks expected that I would follow his footsteps, and they started me off early. Probably around 8. That lasted till I was about 15, then drugs, skateboards, and snowboards consumed my life. I have the Bible that I was given way back then. It has my name in gold on the black leather cover, and notes from when I was probably 5. Thompson Chain Reference KJV. I dig it up every now and then. Sure takes me back.