Revive Our Hearts Podcast

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Infusing God's Word into Your Day

Dannah Gresh: Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth says no matter how busy you are, you can make God’s Word part of your life.

Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth: Whatever season of life you’re in, you need the Word of God to connect to where you are living life. That’s what meditation does. It takes this book, plants it, lodges it, causes it to take root in my heart and produce fruit in my life.

Dannah: This is Revive Our Hearts with Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth, co-author of Lies Young Women Believe, for Friday, June 25, 2021. I'm Dannah Gresh.

The past few weeks, I’ve been reading Numbers! Cannot say that I’d ever aspired to deeply study this book of the Bible that actually counts and takes inventory of the Israelites as they are out in the wilderness between their deliverance from Egypt and on their way to the Promised Land! I mean the first chapter or two counts them and recounts them! What could be more uninspiring than to read a census. And yet, God’s Spirit stirred my heart in the reading of the recording of that data! I sensed His Spirit connecting what I was reading to how I am living! Never have I been more convinced of this truth: the Word of God is “living and active!” When we meditate on it, it can change our lives—even the seemingly boring pieces can mold and shape us!

Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth has been teaching through a series called “Indispensable Ingredients for Life.” Today is the last day of the series, so if you’ve missed any of the other days, or you want to go back and re-listen, you’ll find those episodes on the Revive Our Hearts app or on ReviveOurHearts.com. The series we’ve heard this week is part of a larger series on the life of Joshua, and you’ll find a link to that in the transcript of today’s episode. Now, let’s listen to some practical ways of what it looks like to meditate on God’s Word and apply that to our daily lives.

Nancy: Well, as I think you know by now, I believe with all my heart that learning to meditate on God’s Word is crucial for every believer. Yesterday we saw why by looking at the life of Joshua. We’ve been in a series called "Indispensible Ingredients for Life."

Some women have been listening to this series with us, and I wanted you to hear insights that they’ve gained about meditating on God’s Word. Let’s listen.

Woman 1: The thing that I like most about meditating is that it’s more about the phrase “less is more.” It's just taking a simple truth, versus feeling like you have to take a paragraph or three important sentences. Sometimes just the phrase “Jesus wept,” if you’re grieving or going through a time of sorrow or struggle, can be a great comfort. So I try to follow the pattern of “less is more.” Meditating on a couple of words, even one word—that Jesus is my comforter—and just meditate on the fact that He’s my comforter throughout the day. That’s what I do.

Jill: What I found is that God will give me a passage of Scripture. I remember particularly that when you were speaking about, “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you” (Isa. 43:2). It was so on my heart. Just those few words, but I had it on my rearview mirror on my car, and I had it painted in my bathroom.

Then we had a tragedy in my family—a car accident of a niece that I adored—and when we got the call and I got in the car to go, I flipped down that rearview mirror. God spoke to me again what I had been meditating on: “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you.” I’ve found that meditation is needed in those times—that after I had mediated on that Scripture for months, He gave it to me when I needed it.

Nancy: In that sense, meditating on God’s Word is not only blessing and benefitting you today, but it’s storing up blessings for the future, when you’re going to need to have God’s perspective. You may find yourself in a crisis when you can hardly think straight, but what you have been storing away in your heart is then what will walk with you through that crisis or that circumstance.

Susan: I want to follow up with a Scripture behind what Jill just said. In Isaiah 50, verses 4 and 5, it says: “The LORD hath given me the tongue of the learned, that I should know how to speak a word in season to him that is weary: he wakeneth morning by morning, he wakeneth mine ear to hear as the learned. The LORD hath opened mine ear, and I was not rebellious, neither turned away back” (KJV).

It’s so important for us to meditate on the Word of God, especially first thing in the morning, as you said, when you’re less distracted. Sometimes the word that is going to be there is going to be for me, because I’m weary. But I’ve also found that through that meditation, it may be for my husband or my children, or it may be needed in a phone call. That very word that God has given me that morning will be the word to someone else who is weary and will be able to be that strength to them.

Nancy: Susan, I know that you’ve been through some seasons of time in your life where you were very weary, caring for a child with great physical needs, and not able to sleep through the night. As you think back on those seasons of your life, can you relate to how the Word of God meditated on was a source of strength and grace for you?

Susan: Well, one verse comes to mind. It says, “If your law had not been my delight, I would have perished in my affliction” (Psalm 119: 92). That is so true. It was my lifeline. It was my strength. It was the only thing I had to cling to because everything had been stripped from me. All my securities and all my idols had been laid aside, and it was in those times when the Word of God was the only thing I had to run to and it was my strength.

I remember one night specifically that my son—who was born with multiple birth defects, one of which was that he was born without an esophagus—began to choke. It was a Sunday night, and everybody that I knew was in church. I just remember grabbing him up and grabbing my fifteen-month-old as well, literally almost throwing him down the steps. I ran out to the front porch with both of my two sons and stood on the front porch saying, “God, help.”

I remember the Lord and His Word strengthening me, like you said: “I will be with you. I’ve not abandoned you. I am here.” I looked over to my neighbor next door, and there was a party going on. I crashed their party, saying, “Help me, help me.” I just know that every time that I was in those desperate places, God’s Word came through. As His Word came through, He was saying, “My presence is with you, and I’m not going to leave you; I’m not going to forsake you.”

Woman 2: About fourteen years ago, I went into a coma. When I came out, I had to go through a series of tests. For one of the tests I had to go through, they put me on a very small table, strapped me in—I’m really claustrophobic—and brought a machine down so close to my face, I literally could lift my nose and touch it. I had to be still for five shots for ten minutes each, and I was thinking, What am I going to do? And it was like God said, “Just remember what I’ve told you in My Word.”

So I started quoting Scripture in my mind. I couldn’t move; I had to be still, so I couldn’t verbalize it. And before I knew it, the test was done, and it had been almost an hour. It was really neat how God brought back those Scriptures because I was having trouble with my memory. I was having short-term memory loss, and I couldn’t even remember what I’d had for breakfast that morning. But here I was, and these Scriptures that I’d learned throughout my whole life were coming to my mind. It just shows you how, when you meditate, they come back. It was neat.

Woman 3: You compare Scripture to Scripture. Once when I was reading, I was thinking about why God's people were only supposed to eat animals that chew the cud. Then I got to thinking about how, if you put the Word in your body as food, more than necessary food, it’s there for cud to chew when you have extra time. When you need it, it’s back there for you to mull over again.

Think about how God uses His Word. If it permeates us—if it comes into us—it’s got to come out, and it will be there when we need it. We can count on Him to give us what we need at the right moment. We can count on that.

Woman 4: Last June I had something happen to my family. I had been reading through the Psalms already, and that particular day I was at Psalm 89. It is a psalm that speaks of who God is. It was very appropriate for what was taking place, and I clung to it. I marked it in all the different translations of the Bible that I have.

They all had a different way of saying the same thing, but what it says is,

Righteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne; steadfast love and faithfulness go before you. Blessed are the people who know the festal shout, who walk, O LORD, in the light of your face, who exult in your name all the day and in your righteousness are exalted. For you are the glory of their strength; by your favor our horn is exalted. For our shield belongs to the LORD, our king to the Holy One of Israel (vv. 14–18).

Talking about meditating—there’s so many pieces of that that I chewed on for days. In fact, just being here today reminds me that that was a piece of meditation for me at that time.

Nancy: So the meditation on the Word of God connects up to real-life circumstances and situations. You may not be in crisis—it’s okay not to be in crisis—but whatever season of life you’re in, you need the Word of God to connect to where you are living life. That’s what meditation does. It takes this book, plants it, lodges it, and causes it to take root in my heart and to produce fruit in my life.

It was John Bunyan, I think, who said that he wanted to be so filled with the Word of God that when you pierced him, the blood that came out would be “bibling.”

I like that word picture. I want to be so filled with the Word of God that when I get squeezed—when I get in trouble, when I am frustrated by situations in life over which I have no control, or when other people have issues and they come to me and say, “What do I do about this?”—I want to be so filled with the Word of God that I can pour forth the Word of God, that I can respond in ways that are according to the Word of God.

It’s meditation. There are no shortcuts to meditation. It’s over the long haul. It’s the faithful, day-in, day-out of the Word into our lives—from childhood, I might add, ideally—that brings us to that place of being filled with the Word of God. That’s why it’s so important, moms, for you to be helping your children to develop habits of being exposed to the Word of God—playing CDs of Scripture as they go to sleep at night, perhaps, and just making sure that the Word of God is part of the fabric of how they live.

It’s on the walls of your home; it’s in your mouth; it’s in the music that’s being played in your home. They’re being surrounded and saturated by the Word of God. Otherwise, they’re going to be growing up in the counsel of the ungodly. If you’re not intentional and proactive about getting the Word of God into the hearts and lives and minds of your children, the world will quickly fill up that place in their hearts. Then they will not flourish. They will not be like that tree “planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season” (Psalm 1:3).

Woman 5: Last night I was teaching a group of women at our church. We were doing a Bible study, but some of them didn’t have Bibles, so I decided I would run downstairs to the praise team room because I knew there were Bibles in there. I got to the praise team room, but there were no lights. It was pitch black. I guess I’d never been in there before, needing to turn on lights, and I groped my way around the room. I thought, I am totally blind in here. I can’t find anything.

I knew they were in there, but I could not find them. I had to run across the worship center, turn the lights on, come back, find the Bibles, and take them upstairs to the girls. As I was walking back up the steps, I thought, What an incredible picture of the very thing that we’re talking about tonight—and the thing Nancy’s been sharing about today—because apart from the Word of God, I am clueless. I am blind. I don’t know how to walk. I can’t find what I’m looking for. I don’t know what direction to go.

The Lord used that as a reminder to me, in such a practical way, about the fact that I dare not try to walk through my day apart from His Word. He’s there ready to give me direction if I’m going to look for it.

Nancy: “The entrance of Your words gives light,” as Psalm 119:130 (NKJV) tells us. Kim?

Kim: I am thankful that the Word of God at critical times in my life has brought conviction. Recently, 1 Corinthians 13 has come so alive in my life. That’s something I memorized as a young woman and have taught on, have dissected, have meditated on, but the Lord keeps deepening me in that passage. I know there’s so much I still need to learn in it.

Over and over through my Christian pilgrimage, He has used the Word to bring conviction. If I’ll be faithful to surrender to what He’s teaching me, then I’ll grow. If I grow, then I’ll reflect Christ. If I reflect Christ, then people will see what He’s worth. And if I do that, then He’ll be glorified. That is my desire; that’s His desire, and He places that desire in my heart.

So my encouragement to women is . . . We hear a lot of people say, “I want to grow; I just want to grow spiritually. I’m going to this conference; I’m going to this Bible study.” But no matter how many conferences we go to and how many church services we attend, if we’re not willing to put the Word in our lives . . .

It’s the daily application of the Word, I believe; it’s that picture of the daily manna, the bread that we’re to take daily. God provided the manna daily. He desires for us to live by His Word daily. If people want spiritual growth, I believe that’s the only way it will come.

Nancy: As we meditate on the Word of God, our lives become living epistles, seen and read by others in our world. People who may never crack open their Bible, or may not even own a Bible, begin to see the Word incarnated, lived out in us. Then they are drawn to want to know the Word of life, to get into the written Word themselves. So this is not just for us. This is a means by which we begin to make Christianity real and vital and something to be considered in our world.

Woman 6: I became certified in scuba diving years ago, and one of the things we had to learn then was to “buddy-breathe.” You would take three breaths, and then you would have to take your regulator out of your mouth and put it in your buddy’s mouth while they took three breaths.

Meditating on God’s Word has been like that in my life. It’s life. I breathe it in, and then I find that I take my regulator out—particularly like on an airplane, where you’re supposed to put it in the mouth of the small child next to you. It’s life to each other. Our meditation is important to the whole body, not just to us.

Nancy: Don’t expect as a mom to have resources and a reservoir of life to give to your family if you haven’t been taking in the Word of God yourself. You’ve got to breathe in. You’ve got to be taking in food. They talk with nursing moms about how important it is what you’re eating; what’s getting into your system is what you’re putting into your child.

Women, God put us here on this earth to be bearers and nurturers of life, and some of us are so anemic spiritually, so malnourished, that we have nothing left to give to those around us in our own families or elsewhere who need spiritual food. You’re doing this for yourself, but you’re also doing it so you have resources out of which to minister grace and help and life to others who are hungry and need to be fed.

Susan: I just returned from Thailand and also a trip into a Communist country. When I am with these believers in Thailand—many of them are first-generation Christians—their hunger for the Word of God is so convicting in my own life. And not just their hunger, but also the life that they live out and the sacrifices that they make—for not just believing in Christ, but living for Christ. Many of these believers are persecuted for their faith in Christ, and many of them are rejected by their families.

While we were there we heard the testimony of two women who had come to Christ. They were going to their neighbors and sharing their faith, and eventually they were put in jail for sharing their faith. They were given only a handful of rice for the whole day—that’s all that was given. They only had the clothes on their backs. They slept on the ground.

They continued to share their faith even while they were in jail. They were told that if they continued to share their faith in jail, they would never, ever get out of jail. These two women stood up and said, “We will never recant our faith, and we will not stop sharing our faith.” Eventually, there were so many people getting saved in the jail, the authorities decided the best thing they could do was to release them.

I sat with these dear women, and the stories they shared and the suffering they faced underneath that persecution—it just brought such conviction into my own life. How much are we willing to really live out the truth of God’s Word in reality?

Not only that, but when they gather, they don’t have to do announcements; they don’t have to make up flyers; they don’t have to do a radio broadcast to announce that they’re going to have a special meeting. The Word of God just spreads, and people show up because they’re hungry. They’re so hungry to be taught the Word of God.

Nancy: It makes me think, Susan, of that verse in Proverbs that says, “The full soul loatheth an honeycomb; but to the hungry soul every bitter thing is sweet” (27:7, KJV). There’s something about that, I think. In this country we’re so stuffed, “gospel-stuffed” in a sense, with something that we have not really appreciated, digested, lived out, internalized, or personalized.

We’re sick and tired of something we haven’t really experienced for ourselves. The full soul loathes a honeycomb: “I’m stuffed! Don’t give me anything else to eat.” But to the hungry soul . . . If you’ve got a hungry heart, even the bitter things in God’s Word become sweet to you because you know how much we need that conviction and what a blessing that can be to us.

As we close this time, let me just pray that the Lord will give us hungry hearts for His Word.

Lord, we do thank You for the riches, the incredible riches, of Your Word. It is worth more than any amount of gold or silver. Anything that could be precious to us, the Word of God is more valuable than that. Thank You for giving Your Word to us. Thank You for the Holy Spirit who makes it alive in us and applies it to our lives, who personalizes the Word in us and enables us to live out Your Word.

I pray, Lord, that You would give us hungry hearts. That we would be hungry souls, longing for the food and the meat of Your Word—and then that we would be givers of life to others. As we are fed ourselves on Your Word, may we become a source of life and grace and truth, sharing the living Word of Christ with others around us.

Bless these women, Lord, and make us women who live and love and reflect Your Word in every way throughout our lives. I pray in Jesus’ name, amen.

Dannah: Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth has been talking practically about being women who live by the presence and the Word of God. This wraps up the helpful series "Indispensible Ingredients for Life."

When we surround ourselves withGod’s Word affects every area of our lives—how we think and how we act. Meditating on Scripture helps us believe the promises of God as we are reminded of the hope we have in Him.

This month we've been emphasizing God's promises. You may have heard us talk about a little booklet called 50 Promises to Live By. It's a resource filled with promises from the Bible. It's especially meaningful to Nancy. I think you'll be encouraged by them too.

As you read through these powerful words, these promises from the Lord, you'll find: comfort, peace, stability, no matter what situations you are facing right now. We want to help you stand on God's trustworthy promises. So we'd like to send you a copy of 50 Promises to Live By. We'll do that when you make a gift of any amount to this ministry.

I want to remind you that any donation, no matter how big or how small, it's just simply valuable to us. It's thanks to listeners like you that we are able to provide in-depth, transforming Bible teaching, just like the one we heard today, so that women everywhere are able to thrive in Christ. In fact, one young woman wrote to us about the impact of our messages. She says,

Revive Our Hearts has been the biggest encouragement to me. Messages speak exactly to what I am walking through. I am so thankful there are more mature women in the faith out there who are willing to teach me the Word and tell me the truth in the hard things in life. The Lord has helped me begin to tackle so many sin areas of my life because of this ministry.

We’re so grateful for what God is doing through Revive Our Hearts in her life, and the lives of countless others we have the privilege of hearing from. If you want to be a part of sharing this life-giving truth to women around the world, visit ReviveOurHearts.com to make a donation. You’ll be able to learn about our different outreaches and see what God is doing through this ministry. Or give us a call at 1–800–569–5959, and be sure to ask for a copy of 50 Promises to Live By.

Now, do you know someone who seems impossible to get along with? The way you interact with them can have a big impact in encouraging them to change. We’ll hear more next week from Shaunti Feldhahn as she tells us about the power of kindness.

Revive Our Hearts with Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth encourages you to surround yourself with God's Word. It's an outreach of Life Action Ministries.

All Scripture is taken from the English Standard Version unless otherwise noted.

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