Wednesday, August 3, 2011

My Latest Greatest Question

In my junior high year book one of my friends wrote, just imagine Sue without questions.  Back then my questions resulted from wanting to be in the know; who is invited to whose party, who is getting a new dress for the year-end bash.  My curiosity was flamed by my desire to be popular.  The popular kids were in the know.

I still ask lots of questions; questions of my friends; questions about what I’m reading; questions about what I’m studying.  I truly can’t imagine life without questions.  But my motivation is different.

Questions have served me well.  Recently a friend told me of a method she was using to help others learn to meditate on the Scriptures.  Her method involves a pop can, a timer, paper and pencil.  She sets the pop can in front of her group and asks them to write down at least 20 questions about the pop can in a certain amount of minutes.  All is quiet except for the scribbling of the pencils across the papers.  When the time is up, the pupils look up expectantly and my friend says, “Congratulations, you have just meditated on a pop can.”   Questions are the key to meditation whether on a pop can or the Scriptures.

For example, recently I’ve been pondering the concept of grace in the Scriptures.  I went to the book of Ephesians and circled every instance of the word grace.  I had twelve circles.  Then I asked three questions of each of the twelve times grace was mentioned:

  • What is Paul saying about grace?
  • What did Paul want the Ephesians to understand about grace?
  • Why do I get to listen in to Paul’s words 2000 years later?
The last question is my latest and greatest.  Here’s an illustration of why …

The second use of the word grace is in Ephesians 1:6 (the thought starts in verse 4) ~
“… In love he predestined us for adoption … according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, …”

What is Paul saying? 
     Because of God’s love, the Ephesians were adopted.
          Their adoption is filled with purpose.
                This is a picture of God’s grace toward them.
What did Paul want them to understand?
     Their adoption is because they are loved by God.  This is past.
          Because of the past, in the present they have purpose.
               God is glorified in that purpose.
Why do I get to listen in two thousand years later?
     I too need to know these truths.  God loves me and so He adopted me ~ past.
          My adoption is also filled with purpose ~ present.
               As I live out that present purpose God is glorified.  That is grace.

Sometimes I look around and I get jealous of another’s lot in life.  If only breaks into my thinking; I am not content.  But then I remember, God loves me, has adopted me and my adoption is filled with purpose.  When I live out God’s purpose for me, my life is an echo of His grace toward me.  That’s why I get to listen into God’s truth 2000 years after it was recorded.

“For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.”
Hebrews 4:12


  1. Love the pop can illustration! (though down here in Florida we call it soda! :0) Thanks again for sharing Sue. I so love the ideas I get from you!!!

  2. This is like your signature post with the "echoes of grace" comment and all.

    One quick tip: leave only one space after the period at the end of a sentence. Two spaces went out with typewriters I am told. :)

  3. Oh, PS, I really like the structure of this post: personal story, bridge to present lesson, illustration, application. Nice.

    Suggestion: Go through and take out any repetitious or unnecessary words.