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When the Light Goes On

Ann Spangler
Ann Spangler

The sun beams in a bright blue sky, illuminating filmy clouds.

I love history. My favorite trips have been to places where there is a profound connection to ancient history, like Israel or Greece. Similarly, I love to read biographies of people like Teddy Roosevelt or Winston Churchill because of what their stories reveal about the past.

But don’t count on me when it comes to solving math problems. That’s just not my thing, which is why I can relate to Pastor Jim Cymbala’s self-described struggles.

“I took geometry,” he says, “during my sophomore year in high school, and for the life of me, no matter what that teacher said, I couldn’t figure it out. I didn’t know an isosceles triangle from a bagel with cream cheese. None of it made sense. Then about two months into the semester, the teacher got sick and a new teacher replaced him. Under her tutelage, suddenly, the light went on for me. For the first time, I understood triangles, angles, and parabolas. (Well, maybe not the parabolas.) I had to give credit for my newfound understanding to the new teacher. It was the way she explained things that helped me understand geometry.”

Cymbala goes on to say we need the best possible Teacher when it comes to reading Scripture and applying it to our lives. This means that whatever our bent, whether we love reading this ancient book or not, we all need the guidance of the Holy Spirit. He is the one who makes Scripture come to life so we can understand and apply it.

As Paul says, Scripture “corrects us when we are wrong,” which is another way of saying it brings us to a place where we can experience more of God’s peace (1 Timothy 3:16).

 
Originally published October 17, 2017.

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