DAY 4 Winning Edge Devotions
JOSHUA 1:8 “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.”
One football season our offense had a very hard time scoring in what we call the ‘red zone’. We would drive the football all the way down the field and stall. We could not score touchdowns and we missed a lot of field goals.
The next season we began a practice period called ‘Live at the 35’ where we would spot a ball near the scoring zone and drive for points. We became a lot better at managing that space on the field and learned to adjust, as the ball got closer to the goal line. On 4th down we would punt or kick field goals. With a lot of the same players, the offense that next season learned how to score in the red zone and we scored a lot.
One of the assistant coaches remarked to me that season, “It’s kind of amazing, you get better at what you work on.” That has led us to try to keep in mind to spend practice time working on what we need to do to improve.
I have found the same thing to be true spiritually. It isn’t enough to draw up calendars and plans. A lot of poor performance begins with good intentions. At some point, we have to work the plan. It is in the repetition that we develop long-term memory and the building of habits.
One plan that needs constant work is the study and meditation of the Bible. God’s word is deep and supernatural. It doesn’t read like any other piece of literature I have ever encountered.
There is a wonderful promise here in Joshua 1:8. It encourages us to meditate on the word. This meditation, I believe, is a mental turnover and constant rehearsal of what the text says and how it should be applied.
We need to apply it to our situation. It should not always be directed at others and their issues, it should be directed within. It should be mulled over all day and night. The psychology textbooks tell us that the key to having information stored in our long-term memory is spacing and repetition. We need to multiple encounters with content, put it away for a time, and then return to that information and repeat it again. It is the recurring experience, divided over time, that really goes deep in our being. It is one of the many reasons that we remember music so well.
Notice also that it is the practice of God’s word, in a very detailed way, that brings about success. When we live according to the Creator’s game plan, we find the best environment for success. Every time we ignore God’s plan and go our own way, we close the door to the optimum avenues for true success.
So work the plan. Read it, mull it over, and practice it. Do it again and again. Over time, you will begin to get good at what you work on. Wouldn’t it be great if those things were pleasing to the Lord!
Father, help me have the patience to work the plan. Please remove the day-to-day distractions, which hinder my practice and focus. Let me clearly see what to do, help me to rehearse it, and then give me the strength to practice it.