Food for Thought: What Will You Practice Today?

Mar 21, 2024 | Bible & Beans Blog

Food for Thought: What Will You Practice Today?

“Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.”–Paul (Philippians 4:9)

Last night in Life Group, we shared our answers to the question, “Many people wonder what will be said of them when they pass away. Jacob is focused on what he wants to say (Genesis 48 and 49). If today was your last day, what would you want to say to those you love?”

The timing of this topic hurts my tender heart. I recently lost a dear and best friend of fifty years, which has presented many thoughts to ponder, including these. I always say God’s timing is everything.

When I woke up this morning to dive into my daily practice of quiet time with the Lord—my beloved “Bible and Beans” time—the questions were still on my mind. This passage from Paul jumped off the page! It’s another exhortation from a favorite writer. In Philippians 4:4–9, Paul is wrapping this letter to the church with some final encouragement and important challenges.

When I read verse 9, many of you popped into my mind. Why? I’ll share a secret (not so secret) passion of mine.

As much as I love to see women set free from chronic disease through a shift in choices to healthy food, as much as I know that their cravings can be satisfied and satiated with whole food being their medicine . . .

My greatest desire is for women to hunger and thirst for the Word of God and run in pursuit of righteousness. There, I have found all I need to satisfy my soul’s hunger, cravings, and longings. There, I found the strength to run this race to the best of my ability—not only the strength but also the basic instructions for this one life! Didn’t we learn that the BIBLE stands for Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth as children?

So, hear my heart in the question I ask you today.

How can we put into practice what we don’t know? What we don’t study?

I recently learned the Hebrew word for meditates in Psalm 1:2:
. . . but whose delight is in the law of the Lord,
and who meditates on his law day and night.

The Hebrew word is hagah. Hagah means to devour literally.

When was the last time you devoured the Word of God?

This is what I want my loved ones to know. I will say until the day I die: The Word of God completely transformed my life, my heart, my physical health (how to care), my emotional health (how to think about such things), and most importantly, my spiritual journey through this short time on this earth (how to run this race well). Emphasis on short when I consider life and unexpected death. Sigh.

Look, I know it’s hard. I get it. I neglected this nourishment for my soul for three decades!

What I want to say to those I love (which is the entire Church):

Dig in. Devour. Satisfy that hunger and thirst, the restlessness, the anxiety that keeps you up at night (read the whole passage in Philippians 4:4–9 because Paul explicitly calls out anxiety). Where will you find peace from your heavy circumstances in life?

If you grabbed your Bible, you’re right! I used to hear my pastor say, “Before you know it, this daily discipline will be your daily delight!” He is so right!

But how?

I always tell my coaching clients, “Small habits build and deliver big results!”

You can begin small. Truly, you can with small habit changes like:

-Set your Bible next to your bed. Read a Psalm when you rise or before you fall asleep.
-Add the Bible app (YouVersion) to your phone. The app will read Scripture while you wash the dishes or fold the laundry. You can also listen to it on your daily commute or in the pick-up line at school.
-Check-in with your pastor or women’s ministry director. Share your struggle. Ask for help!
-Connect with someone in your church to keep you accountable.
-Ask someone you trust for doctrinally sound Bible studies.
-Pray about this! Ask someone to pray for you.
-Save this Scripture meme for a reminder.
-Spend the next week reading and rereading Philippians 4:4–9. Meditate on it.

I began small with an app called “First5.” I thought, “Sure, I can spend the first five minutes of my day rejuvenating my spiritual health!” I typically spend 15 minutes to five hours, but I learned to be flexible. Hah! Honestly, I wish I could spend all day in this practice. That kind of overstuffing would be a dream.

A meme is going around right now saying, “If Paul saw the Church today, we’d be getting a letter!” Sure enough. But sisters, we have those letters—here and now—and they are so easily accessible in our day. How much do we take the freedoms we have for granted? The Bible can be on your phone! You can scroll it there! What’s a verse you’ve read recently that has made you stop the scroll?

Well, it was Philippians 4:9 today. Read it again.

“Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.”–Paul

What are you learning? Who are you receiving from? What are you hearing or listening to? What do you see? Do you have eyes to see and ears to hear the wisdom and knowledge from God?

Put it into practice! Again, you can’t put anything into practice if you don’t know what it is. Grab the peace that surpasses your understanding today so you can stand up under the stormy seasons of life (causing anxiety)! It’s life-changing.

If you need more support, I’m open to sharing more. Seeing you struggle hurts my heart, but I completely understand where you are. I hope to inspire you to move toward where you long to be. In recent days, I have been flat on my face on the floor in sorrow, but every single day, I get up, dry my face, and press on because of it. You can have it, too.