The volume of information about the human body overwhelmed me during my medical school days. I was eager to conquer that medical information in order to begin diagnosing and treating diseases. However, a course called "Putting the Ill at Ease" changed my thinking. The professor instilled in us a new perspective -- that of perceiving the whole patient (body, mind and spirit) -- instead of just treating "the diseased lung in room 205." From that point on, my view of medical practice changed; I processed new knowledge not only for diagnosis, but also to compassionately interact with patients. (Unfortunately, only five other members of my medical school class took this elective course.)
The huge task of mastering the content of any subject can mask the more important process of putting that subject matter "to work". In other words, one can know a fact without the wisdom to use it. I am often guilty of this in matters of spiritual truths.
I can easily concentrate on Biblical principles and precepts (the words) and miss a genuine encounter with God. Whether I am reading the Bible, or listening to sermons, my mind can often become analytical and critical rather then humble and willing. God's intention for us is not informational but transformational. Amazingly, He offers us the opportunity to be changed by His divine and powerful words through His Spirit.
King David tells us in the Psalms,
"The law of God is perfect, reviving the soul.
The statues of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple.
The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart.
The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes."
(Psalm 19:7-8 NIV)
This week may God's intentions be realized in us - transformation!