God’s Word is More than a Fortune Cookie

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As a kid, I loved going out for Chinese food with my grandpa, Ed. Not only was the food great, but we always got a fortune cookie after the meal. In all honesty, I didn’t care for the taste of the cookie. Rather, I was intrigued by the concept of placing little nuggets of wisdom within a desert. Brilliant!

My grandpa Ed was the first to give me my own Bible.

Me around seven-years-old with my grandpa Ed

I was one of those kids who got excited about receiving a book. And that particular book was the largest one my small hands had ever held. It also had a leather cover with my name engraved in gold letters at the bottom. How cool was that? I recall opening the paper-thin pages with awe and curiosity. However, I became discouraged when I could not understand most of what was written in the amazing book until …

I stumbled upon the books of Psalms and Proverbs. The Proverbs reminded me of the fortunes from the Chinese cookies. And the rhythmic Psalms were my introduction to poetry—words filled with deep emotion that danced across the pages. I was hooked!

As a teen, my fascination with poetry and the “sages from the ages” increased as I became acquainted with the works of Yeats, Shakespear, Wordsworth, and others. I had an unquenchable desire for knowledge and philosophy which kept me enrapt during my coming of age years. But nothing compared to the Psalms and the Proverbs.

To this day, I get excited about the lessons I continue to learn in these two books. So, when God impressed upon me an idea for a blog series through Psalms and Proverbs, I was over the moon.

Me at the wise old age of sixteen, reading poetry at my desk

Interestingly, a study through Psalms and Proverbs coincides with the word of the year God gave me: KNOW.

I arrived at the word when journaling my goals and dreams for 2019. As I began writing, I experienced an unsettling and restlessness.

I expressed to the Lord how I yearned to grow deeper in my relationship with Him when God impressed a simple yet profound sentence upon my heart:

“In order to grow, you must KNOW.”

It took my breath away. I realized God was not only referring to ‘head’ knowledge.

“All the while, you will grow as you learn to know God better and better.”
Colossians 1:10

His Spirit was calling to my spirit—to the essence of who I am. Deep calling to deep (Psalm 42:7).

“Do you KNOW me?” He asked. “Do you know who you are in me?”

Instantly I realized I had reached an impasse. If I was going to grow, this meant depth. For me, depth means revealing things hidden. Of course, nothing is truly hidden from God. These are things I hide from myself. Lies I believe. And truths I have not allowed into my desperately hidden brokenness.

Perhaps you have been hiding, too? 

We tend to reveal only parts of our true selves. We keep our worst fears and deepest sin buried deep, not only from ourselves but from God. But He knows us better than we know ourselves. And He desires real intimacy and wholeness.

“Keep me from lying to myself; give me the privilege of knowing your instructions.”
Psalm 119:29 NLT

My life-long quest for knowledge has brought me full circle, but not in the way I imagined. Ironically, my first published book entitled “Secrets” is more telling than I realized.

Readers I met at the book signing for “Secrets” and “Uninvited.”

In order to grow, you must know. 

Like Adam and Eve in the garden, I have attempted to hide undesirable aspects about myself from God as if my brokenness is a surprise to Him. But my hiding has only prevented me from a deeper intimacy with God.

For the first time, my desire to allow God into my brokenness is greater than my desire to keep it hidden. 

I’m not sure what this is going to look like. But I do know this: God is good. Everything he does is good. 

So, although uncomfortable, His calling me out of hiding is going to be good.

I hope you will enjoy our journey together through the Psalms and Proverbs over the next several weeks.

Let’s get started.

“Listen to my voice in the morning, Lord. Each morning I bring my requests to you and wait expectantly.” Psalm 5:3

I’m a creature of habit. I love routine. It makes me feel safe and secure. I also love mornings. Needless to say, I have a morning routine. I fondly refer to this time as “coffee with Jesus.”

I read the verse above on January 1st. I smiled at the timeliness of the verse and was about to move on when I felt the nudge of the Holy Spirit to linger a while longer. I glanced at the clock. I only had a few more minutes left for my quiet time.

You see, I thought I had gleaned everything the verse had to offer and was ready to skip ahead until my eyes landed on the words wait expectantly. I realized I had read God’s holy word as if it were a fortune cookie. Although fun, fortune cookies are a novelty. God’s word is more than a mere desert cookie. It is a meal intended to be feasted upon.

Sometimes routines can become a trap. Which is more important—the self-imposed routine or the nudging of the Holy Spirit to wait? And to wait expectantly.

I have the morning routine down pat—at least I thought I did. But there was something else about the morning time the Lord wanted me to understand. With the first rays of sunlight, the morning chases away the darkness. Things that were shadowed or hidden completely, are now revealed.

My amazing view while driving one morning

On this particular morning, the light revealed how often I don’t pray with the expectation that the Lord will answer me.

Prayer is a two-way street: We speak to God. God speaks to us. But how will we hear Him if we don’t wait?

Imagine asking a friend for a favor and then never giving them a chance to answer you.

I could hear the Spirit say, “You would be surprised at the answers you would receive if you would wait expectantly.”

So, I started the new year a new way. I still have my morning coffee with Jesus time. But I am going to be more intentional about waiting to hear what God has to say. I’m going to allow the sunlight of a new morning to shine into the shadows.

Father, help me not rush through my morning prayer time mindlessly like an ordinary routine such as brushing my teeth. Help me allow the sunlight into hidden areas of brokenness You want to heal. Teach me the art of listening for You and to wait expectantly. In the powerful name of Jesus, AMEN.

I’d love to hear from you in the comments below. 

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15 thoughts on “God’s Word is More than a Fortune Cookie”

  1. “For the first time, my desire to allow God into my brokenness is greater than my desire to keep it hidden.” Beckie, it never ceases to amaze me how the Lord connects Christian friends with one another at the moments we least expect it. I am currently reading “True You” by Michelle DeRusha, as I promised to review it on my blog. Oh, my word, what a labor of love this is! Your words that I quoted in the comment perfectly reflect the entire premise of this book. Our true selves are not defined by what we do, but by who we are in God’s eyes: His beloved children. We can’t keep our deepest desires hidden from the One who knows all, if we expect to be healed and whole.
    “Know” is a terrific word for the year, my friend. I’ll be revealing mine in tomorrow’s post!


    1. Martha,
      I’ll be interested to read your review of the book you mentioned. By what you’ve said here, I think I’ll be reading it, too! How amazing is our God to point me toward Michelle’s book through you?!
      I’m also looking forward to the big reveal of your WOTY.
      Blessings, my friend!


  2. This is such a great way to think about this: “Imagine asking a friend for a favor and then never giving them a chance to answer you.” Thanks for giving me much to ponder … and a reminder to wait EXPECTANTLY!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Julie, the Lord has given me lots to ponder lately. I’m glad this post did the same for you. I’m so grateful that our Heavenly Father is about our growth as we learn to “know” Him more and more.
      Thanks for taking the time to share.


  3. I agree 100% Beckie! I love Psalms and Proverbs, too. I wrote a blog post years ago with a twist on downloading free “APPS” that was really about Proverbs. APP-Applying Proverbs with Purpose. I thought of something I said in relation to this post,

    “These aren’t proverbial statements wrapped in a fortune cookie. They are biblical, noteworthy statements of God’s truth bringing wisdom for life.”

    I agree, routines can become a trap…especially to greater things and purpose. And that prayer IS a two-way street. Thanks for this beautiful and vulnerable reminder to not stay hidden and to know God more, spend quality time with Him!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Karen, thank you for your thoughtful comment. I especially enjoyed your quote “These aren’t proverbial statements wrapped in a fortune cookie. They are biblical, noteworthy statements of God’s truth bringing wisdom for life.” Amen to that!


  5. Many years ago, I completed Beth Moore’s Bible Study, “Breaking Free.” Although I knew prior to the study that I had issues, I didn’t realize how “broken” I was until going through that experience with a group of godly women that lifted me in prayer. My journey since that time continues to face that brokenness, but God’s healing has also continued. Bless you, sweet friend, for your faith and courage. Many times, we are afraid to admit that we “don’t have it all together.” But, sometimes in our brokenness, we can be the strongest witness to those that are also suffering. By the way–I don’t like the taste of fortune cookies either.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Katherine, thank you for your kind words. Although we haven’t met, I felt like a friend was speaking words of encouragement.
      I have also done Beth Moore’s Breaking Free—twice. The first time I didn’t complete it because I was young and it was too deep. I finally completed it five years ago. Since then, the Lord has been doing quite a work in the “broken” areas I have kept hidden.
      I think you are right about our brokenness being a witness. This “cracked pot” sure hopes so, anyway!
      Blessings ❤


  6. I love learned to love Asian food when we lived in Papua New Guinea. My favorite is Cashew Chicken over friend rice, yum yum. I am keeping my word from last year because it was exactly what I needed. I might add a word to it which would bring an explanation. You are a great writer, able to express yourself well. I will be back to gleam some more from you.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Wise Hearted, How amazing to have lived in Papua New Guinea! I love Cashew Chicken, too. I’m curious, what is the word God gave you?
    Thanks for your encouraging comments. Blessings to you and yours!


    1. It is the same word I had last year since He has not dropped another word into my spirit. I love that He let me use it for another year for it’s the desire of my heart to go deep with our Lord.


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