Manna from Heaven: Enjoying the Bible as an English Nerd

I’ve been a reader for as long as I can remember.  My mom used to take us to the library as kids, and I would check out big stacks of books every week and have them devoured by the time we went back.  

English was one of my favorite subjects growing up and I ended up getting my Bachelor’s Degree in Creative Writing (Poetry) and my MFA in Fiction Writing.  

Needless to say, I really like books.  

But since I started reading the Bible, no book has been able to compare to the depth and richness.  I’m in awe that the Bible has so many books by so many authors written over thousands of years, and yet the representation of the character of God remains consistent throughout.  Only God could have orchestrated that!  

I read the Bible straight through from cover to cover the first seven months I was saved.  In many ways, keeping my nose in the Word of God kept me protected from anxiety and depression.  

My first read through, I approached it in a “What’s even in this thing?”  

I had some assumptions based on what I’d seen of religion, but what I found was that the Bible was delightful and surprising!  I saw in many ways how religion had actually deviated from the inerrant Word of God.  

I’m going back through the Bible, this time with the intention of savoring the language.  I started from the beginning and have been making my way through, chapter by chapter.  

There are times when I’m struck by profound, poetic lines that seem to strike me like a tuning fork, reverberating the mysteries of heaven.  

Last night I was reading out of Exodus.  It was the story of how God parted the Red Sea to deliver the Israelites out of the slavery of Egypt.  

“The waters were gathered together
The floods stood upright like a heap
The depths congealed in the heart of the sea.”
Exodus 15:8

When I read things like that, I feel so close to God.  I feel Holy Spirit warm my heart and belly, and new facets of Abba are revealed to me.  He is healer, provider, warrior, mighty and powerful.  But He is our Creator, and He inspires such beauty and creativity!

It’s not long after that the Israelites were in the wilderness.  God provided daily bread for His people.  There are such beautiful lines in this passage.

“Behold, I will rain bread from heaven for you.”  Exodus 16:4

“And in the morning the dew lay all around the camp.  And when the layer of dew lifted, there, on the surface of the wilderness, was a small round substance as fine as frost on the ground.”  Exodus 16:13

“When the sun became hot, it melted.”  Exodus 16:21

“And the house of Israel called its name Manna.  And it was like white coriander seed, and the taste of it was like wafers made of honey.”  Exodus 16:31 

Can you imagine waking up every morning to bread covering the ground like frost, and the excess melting in the sun?  And the bread tasting like wafers made of honey?  Wow!  

I want to see waters congealed in the heart of the sea!  I want to taste bread from heaven!  I want see miracles, signs, and wonders!!!  

God is the same now as He was then!  Maybe in our lifetime we will see better and more!

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