Amid all the dismal news reports related to Covid-19, I was struck by a recent report in Channel News Asia on what the pandemic has prompted people to do. With travel made impossible, two Singaporean journalists decided to embark on their own “trip”—by walking 110km around Singapore. The walk took them five days and was, needless to say, a challenging one.
I couldn’t help but wonder: Wasn’t there a better, more leisurely way to explore Singapore? And why couldn’t they simply cycle or drive round the island? It would have been far less punishing and take less time.
The two journalists, however, reported some benefits of doing the trip on foot—such as getting a picturesque view of parts of Singapore that they would normally not have seen. Not to mention getting to sample more of the foodie haunts along the way.
But perhaps the biggest outcome of their walk was the deep sense of accomplishment that came from completing the challenge.
This got me thinking. As believers of Christ, would we consider taking on the challenge to set aside time to read the Bible or specific books? We may have read the entire Bible in our lifetime. But perhaps there are still parts of Scripture, or certain books of the Bible, that we might want to explore again. And perhaps, like the two journalists who learnt to see Singapore from a new perspective, we will discover new truths and insights that we might not have seen before in God’s Word.
Doing this might require us to take a few days of leave, or to find a place of solitude, away from the usual hustle and bustle of our daily lives. These tend to pull us away from enjoying time with God and His Word and in prayer, so we might need to find a way to get away from them.
Just as the two men spent some time planning for their long walk around Singapore, we, too, will need to plan this journey through the Word of God. We will need to set aside some quality time, both to read and reflect on the Bible, as well as to pray and to take breaks. We may want to have a notebook ready by our sides, to note down verses or passages that we want to spend more time on.
But I believe it will be worth all the effort. Feeding on God’s Word will help us to savour on His guidance, wisdom, and love. We may also hear His gentle and soft promptings that will help us to get a new understanding of His grace in our travel plan of reading His precious Word. And we will gain a deeper sense of His presence and love, and a greater awareness of how we can continue to love God and love His people more.
Then we will be able to, like the Psalmist exclaims in Psalm 119:103: “How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!” —C. H. Tan
O Lord, Your Word is life to me.
Give me a new passion and hunger for it,
that I will want to spend more time in it.
Give me the courage and strength
to take on this challenge
of exploring Your Word anew.