Romania is a day’s drive from Greece. So that was our default getaway when we lived in Eastern Europe. Traveling through Bulgaria was a harrowing adventure, but at the end of the road we found the closest place to paradise on earth.
After a long Romanian winter, the first thing to welcome us was the warmth. It was late spring, so it was warm, not hot. Nor was it crowded. We didn’t plan it, but when we landed on Santorini, the most beautiful and distant Greek island, it was two weeks before school let out and the workers began their vacations. It’s also said that the farther south you travel in Europe, the warmer the climate and personality of the people. That is true of the Greeks. For 14 days we basked in the sun and let their hospitality relax our spirits. What a welcome they gave us!
The writer James uses the same verb urging us to give a similar welcome to God’s Word. Most of us own a Bible, but do we give it the time we would give a guest visiting from a distant land? Have we learned to curl up and relax with it like we would a letter from a loved one stationed on the other side of the globe?
James tells us why it’s difficult to concentrate when we read and pray. “In humility welcome the implanted Word…” We feel so compelled to get things done that we forget that God can keep the world spinning while we take time to restore our souls. And what a pay-off! Not only will Jesus multiply our time like He did the loaves and fishes, but He promises that a few minutes in His Word will save our souls from the corruption and despair of the world, and in the end that’s the only thing we can take to heaven with us. So, in the words of James:
“In humility welcome the implanted Word which is able to deliver your souls.” James 1:21
Santorini Island Culture