I stood in the middle of the Lifeway store and looked around me.
My sister-in-law had a gift item that needed returned and I was glad to visit an actual, real life, Lifeway storefront. I’d shopped Lifeway online, but never stepped foot inside one of their stores.
I felt at home as I looked at all the women’s Bible studies and familiar covers and shelf after shelf of books and the good resources and pretty bags and pictures.
I walked over to the Bible section and I just stood and gazed.
I gazed in gratitude.
Part of me wanted to prostrate myself on the floor right there.
In honor and glory to God.
I’ve been in much larger Christian bookstores and in smaller ones.
I ran my eyes along all the stacks of Bibles and back and forth along the wall housing the shelves of Bibles.
I felt awed and overwhelmed.
One store. So many Bibles.
God’s word. So rich. One lifetime will never even dig into the first depth of it.
Simple and complex all in one.
I was quiet on the outside, but on the inside my heart soared and just sang in glory to God at the available Bibles and books all intended for His glory. What a blessed thing it is. I felt so amazed and just so thankful and I thought of the Christians who have to hide their Bibles or don’t have a Bible or have just part of a Bible or are persecuted or beheaded or beaten or imprisoned.
I take my Bible for granted. I take my freedom to visit a Lifeway store or a Family Christian store for granted.
I don’t want to take it for granted. I want to be grateful. I am grateful.
My sister-in-law finished her return. We browsed around a bit more and my baby niece babbled as she rode in the cart. Such a precious little gal. Blessed to be born into a home surrounded with Jesus and His word. Bible storybooks on her shelves. Visiting a Bible bookstore before she’s even two. It makes me bow my head and just breathe, “Jesus”.
We got ready to leave, since it was getting late and we were getting hungry and our husbands and my son were waiting in the van.
As we stepped out into the cold, with a thank-you to the cashier lingering on our lips, and a “thank-you for coming in” sounding in our ears, I said thank-you in my heart that I was able to step inside and visit the store for a few minutes one February evening.