“Can there be a more fitting pursuit in youth or a more valuable possession in old age than a knowledge of Holy Scripture? In the midst of storms it will preserve you from the dangers of shipwreck and guide you to the shore of an enchanting paradise and the ever-lasting bliss of the angels.”
The above quote reminded me (or better yet brought me to a state of contrition) how important it is to continually read the Scripture when in a state of long-term desolation. This is a basic truth that the enemy usually tries to get us to cease engaging in during the beginnings of its attack on us.
The Psalmist states in Psalm 119:11, I treasure your word in my heart, so that I may not sin against you. (Ps. 119:11 NRS). The problem for me is that no matter how much I read the Scripture, study the Scripture, and pray the Scripture, I still sin. I likely sin less, but I still sin.
The Scripture does give me spiritual strength. It does give brief reprieve from the suffering that comes with desolation. It does give me a least a sliver of hope that provides a short-term sense of calm and peace. It is not a magic book that can take away all my troubles, sorrow, and pain. Too many people try and use the Bible in this manner. You will be disappointed if you do.
I am not the Psalmist. What give him peace may not give me peace. What provides direction for him might be confusion to me. Still, the prayers of the Psalms and the reading of Scripture is by far a better choice of help than anything the world offers.