One day a lady called my pharmacy to ask for a refill of her high blood pressure (HBP) medication. I looked in the computer and noticed that she was several days past due for a refill. This suggests that she may not be taking her medication daily as prescribed. So I asked her, “Ma’am, are you taking your HBP medication every day?” She said, “no, my blood pressure is not high every day.” (Well, I guess she told me!)
I imagined that each morning she checks her blood pressure and if it is running high, she takes a pill, and if it’s not running high, she decides she doesn’t need to take a pill.
I went on to explain to her that this particular medication isn’t for a random HBP reading. High Blood Pressure is not an acute condition like a headache or stomachache where we can take the med on an “as needed” basis. It is a chronic condition that can be successfully controlled with medications which are designed to be taken daily.
The goal is not to get your blood pressure down once it spikes. The goal is to keep it from spiking. Hence the daily recommended regimen.
Have you ever been encouraged to do something daily, regularly, or with some degree of consistency but you didn’t quite see the importance of such a commitment? Perhaps you are like me or the lady at the pharmacy who sometimes has issues with the importance of doing something so often when the occasional regimen just seems to make more sense. “Do as needed” looks like a better or more sustainable fit.
One of the first accounts of the earliest days of the church outlines how to combat this type of struggle. In Acts 2 we learn that once the people heard and accepted the message being taught by the Apostles and were filled themselves with the Holy Spirit, they then went back to keep learning what was being taught. The outpouring of the Holy Spirit produced not just momentary enthusiasm but several continuing commitments, one of which was a commitment to learn. How often was this happening? Occasionally? As needed? Nope…
“They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teachings… Everyday…”
Acts 2:42a & 46a (NIV)
Scripture is not intended to be applied only when the pressure is high—but rather daily in order that we may have a renewal of the corrupt minds with which we enter this walk of discipleship.
When people with high blood pressure take daily meds “as needed,” occasionally, or not at all, they may feel fine but their bodies have undergone a period of time where blood was pumped at a force potentially high enough to cause internal damage. This places them at an increased risk for a heart attack or stroke.
Similarly, when disciples with corrupt minds, contaminated by a sinful world, read the Bible “as needed,” occasionally, or not at all, we may feel fine but the reality is this: under those conditions, our minds have undergone a period of time when sin and darkness were pumped at a force potentially high enough to cause damage to our view points, our peace of mind, and our ability to carry out the will of God. This can, in turn, compromise the efficiency at which we are equipped to live the Christian life.
That being said, let’s have a daily experience with the WORD!