Over 20 years ago, my wife bought herself a Bible—a burgundy, leather-bound Believer’s Study Bible. She prepared Sunday School lessons, took sermon notes, used it in her own speaking engagements, and read it devotionally on a daily basis. After two decades of use, the leather looked worn, bent, and cracked around the edges. Page after page was marked up with her own notes, and it really appeared ready for retirement. That Book and my bride had traveled many, many hours on their walk with the Master.
Last November a terrible thing happened! Jeanne lost her old friend, her Bible. Following me around Tennessee, she felt sure it was left at one of the churches we had visited. An APB was sent out for everyone on my itinerary to be on the lookout. We searched diligently in our home, automobiles, suitcases, and bookshelves for days, but to no avail. For four months she used her other Bibles, but it just wasn’t the same. For Valentine’s Day, I even bought her a beautiful new Bible. In March she opened the seldom used bottom drawer of an end table at our home. All I heard was a very loud scream mingled with spontaneous laughter. All I saw were tears of joy. There it was in that end table drawer—her old friend, her Bible.
Why not rediscover your old friend, God’s Holy, wonderful, matchless Word. Read it carefully, prayerfully, daily, devotionally. Hide it in your heart. Allow it to direct your steps. Let the God of this universe speak through His Living Word.
The Precious Bible
Though the cover is worn
And the pages are torn,
And though places bear traces of tears,
Yet more precious than gold
Is the Book, worn and old
That can shatter and scatter my fears.
This old Book is my guide,
’Tis a friend by my side,
It will lighten and brighten my way;
And each promise I find
Soothes and gladdens my mind
As I read it and heed it today.
I have a missing “friend.” A Thompson Chain that I was given back in the mid 80’s. I have no idea what happened to it, other than it got misplaced during a couple of moves over the last few years. I preached many a message from that Bible. It also has a lot of signatures in it (as a young preacher it was a habit to collect them, you know). Wish I could find it.
The poem is by William Cowper who also wrote “There is a Fountain Filled with Blood.” I believe it can be found in his collection called “Olney Hymns.” Blessings…