I Gave Away My Favorite Bible

I gave away my favorite Bible this morning… and by favorite, I mean favorite. I drove down to Fort Lewis (now called Joint Base Lewis McChord) to pray with a soldier and his wife who was having surgery to remove a tumor behind his ear. As we prayed, I asked his wife if she had a Bible with her to read while her husband was in 7+ hours of surgery. She said she didn’t. So I gave her my Bible. As I left Madigan Army Hospital, I got a little tearful. It’s not that I was having “giver’s remorse.” It was this… in that moment I was simply overcome by how much God has loved me, spoken to me, and guided me through that particular copy of His word. I’ve preached hundreds of sermons from that very Bible. Its margins are filled with a decade’s worth of notes, observations, and quotes. I’ve read, prayed, and journaled through book after book of that Bible. I’ve read story after story from its pages to my son. I’ve clung to it for dear life in some of my darkest days. Some of its pages are stained with my very tears.

Please hear me. There’s nothing sacred about that particular copy of the New American Standard Bible. I’ve never set up a little shrine in my office and burned candles to my black leather Bible. But there is something absolutely sacred and life-giving about God’s word. As I said “goodbye” to the couple and my favorite Bible, I realized how truly living and active God’s word is (Hebrews 4:12). I prayed that His words would jump off the page and into the heart of that young wife as her husband was under the knife.

As I returned to my office, I immediately went online in search of a new Bible. In a couple of days it will show up with clean, note-less margins. And once again, God will love me, speak to me, and guide me though His holy, beautiful, life-changing word. He will show me the power and glory of Jesus. He will call the Spirit to clearly illumine His heart for me, for my family, for my neighborhood, for our church, and for our world.

I’m looking forward to the new adventure…


14 Replies to “I Gave Away My Favorite Bible”

  1. Jonathan,
    Thanks for the helpful thoughts. What translation will the new Bible be?
    Peace of the Lord be with you.
    Marion Bauman

    1. I’m a New American Standard Bible (1995 Update) kind of guy. a little more “wooden” on the reading, but very literal. a second great translation is the ESV (English Standard Version).

  2. Thank you for your openness and tender- heart to the Holy Spirit’s leading. God knows the impact that “your” bible have on this young woman and wife. Thank you for sharing.

  3. Pastor J….

    Awesome :-)! Thanks for sharing/your sacrifice. I was born at Ft. Lewis, my Dad served 28yrs and the military “servants” are close to my heart. Way to serve bro!

  4. Jonathan,
    Thank you for sharing this and for giving of yourself this day. God knows of course just how much that particular Bible means to you and yet you gave it away anyway for the greater cause. You are loved and I am honored to have you as my Pastor.
    Blessings, Jim

    1. thanks jim… it was truly my joy to be able to part with that particularly beloved copy of God’s word… and yes, for the greater gospel cause!

  5. This is why I come on Sunday and open myself to what is being taught… Because of the authenticy of the love for God and His word. Way to go Pastor!

    You reminded me of an occasion when I gave away a pocket knife handed down from my grandfather. He was an avid fisherman and this knife showed years or wear. I forgot it was in my pocket as I tried to pass security in a rush to catch an airplane coming home from Mexico. I had 5 minutes to give away this worthless knife that meant the world to me. Gave it to a complete stranger who couldn’t speak English. What killed me sitting on that airplane was the sense that i felt this man had no idea of the value of that knife. I had suffered loss… for nothing.

    It’s easier to sacrifice if I know there is a benefit or at least an appreciation. But to pay a great price for those who may not fully appreciate the gift, now that takes God inspired love. He gave his son when so few would receive him. “Who is this King of Glory…”

    Thanks for living out the inspired word of God.

    1. thanks john… and yes, all of the authority/power is in God’s word. and then I truly believe that those gospel seeds broadcast through the gift of that Bible will yield fruit… and who knows how much. I guess I’ll get to find out in heaven!

  6. Which Bible did you choose. I want to find one for my daughters husband (not yet saved) starting to go to church with my daughter.

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