How many of you remember your first Bible. You may have been gifted one upon you entrance into a certain elementary grade. Or maybe someone who was near and dear to you gave it to you. Or maybe it was the beloved youth leader who brought you into the church. Maybe a random stranger off the street handed one to you as you were walking down the street. Whatever the case may be your first Bible always holds a large sense of sentimental value. My first Bible was given to me by my church when I entered the third grade. I remember when I first got it it was like the love of my life. I took it everywhere and was always reading from it. It was at the time my favorite Bible. However, as time went on I began to gather new Bibles. They were new translations, certain study bibles, Bibles with sweet covers. Either way my first Bible began to become less relevant and became more of a sentimental reminder of my passion for scripture. Every so often I will pick up my old Bible and look at all the marks in it and remember the time when it was the central tool of my faith.
I often feel like this metaphor translates to our relationship with Christ. Christ is like our first Bible. It is in him that we base our Christian faith and we allow ourselves to believe. He is the one we are initially introduced to when we question becoming Christians. Becoming a Christian is also a sentimental time and can be an impactful time in a persons life. However, like any good emotional high there is the trip back down into the valley. This means that while we may have the time of feeling super great our life cannot stay on top of the mountain. It must come back down to the valley. It is how we handle these valley times, these times when we may be using different Bibles than our first. We continue to believe but maybe in a different way or maybe a little bit more lazily. Now this may look different to many different people. People find these times as a big struggle for our faith and it is through these challenging times that our faith can grow.
So I invite you to remember your first Bible and remember the sentiments that came with it. I also invite you to remember your baptism or conversion to Christianity and how it made you feel. When you are feeling in a struggling time in your life remember those times and know that God is always there and he is there to help you with whatever is going on.