“Back to the Bible…” I can still hear the crooning voices singing in unison over the airwaves in my childhood home. I picture them, a Black Baptist Gospel group, decked out in long choir robes, gently swaying back and forth to the song felt in their hearts even more than heard from their lips.
In reality, I didn’t know who it was singing. I still don’t, but when I heard people reading the Bible, I usually pictured Christians, often Baptists, but very seldom did I picture Catholics reading the Bible. As a teen, I listened to all the popular music, usually loud, obnoxious dance music or rap. Music I’d cringe hearing from my kids’ iPods now, but I still remember the “Back to the Bible” spot that played on the top 40 station once a week.
I’d pretend not to listen to the choir singing, “Back to the Bible…” I couldn’t let anyone know I was that uncool to sit and actually get something from the preacher’s message, and yet, I did.
Now, as I have hundreds of potential posts running through my head on topics that range from abandonment to facing pregnancy alone, divorce to annulments, and dating to raising five boys alone, I cannot help but think that none of these topics are exactly right for the Christmas season.
As I was thinking about this and about what to write for today, the “Back to the Bible” song from years ago came quietly but persistently back to me, like music in the background of my mind with no off switch, and I knew the answer.
It is something I have been struggling with for a while: How do I show enough of my life to let suffering people know they are not alone and that there is hope, to let others know the reality of what abuse, abandonment, and single parent families face, and yet most of all, give the thanks and glory to God?
“Back to the Bible…” the song came back to me and rung through my head for the entire day. It is time for Catholics to come back to the Bible. While I love my Catholic traditions, the Rosary and the celebration of the Mass and Eucharist, I think Catholics are often missing out on some of what the Lord wants us to know.
By becoming Bible reading Catholics, we can learn so much. I hope you are inspired to read the Bible and contemplate on what it contains – from the justice and wrath the Lord experiences because of our sin to the love and mercy of the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ to the power and strength received through the holy Spirit.
The Bible helps us to be more about God and less about ourselves. Whether you have read the Bible cover to cover or have never picked it up before, read it now and let me know what your favorite verse, chapter, parable, lesson is. What is something that moved you? Is there something that applies to your life now? Is something made clearer after contemplating the Word contained within its binding? Let me know!
In the new year, I will look at why Catholics don’t read the Bible more and post a series on Catholic Bible Study 101 – Stumbling through the Bible for Catholics. I hope you join me for that and share some of your insight as well.