In my book Dog Walk Talk; while I’m walking, God’s talking one of the life snippets in the book was titled Great Big Cow. The snippet came about because big fella is a guy I see almost every day….and I experienced a God lesson from him. Yes, he is huge. Yes, those brown and white cows are full size (the picture makes them seem smaller than they are). I later found out that the big guy’s name is Moose when I finally caught up with Farmer Dan, his owner. Moose is a family pet. He is revered. He is protected. He is special.
Seeing Moose the other day brought to mind another life lesson from God. Cows eat a lot. Cows like Moose eat a whole lot. I checked into the process of cows eating and found some interesting facts. The cow’s stomach has two sections one might think of as dual stomachs. For simplicity sake, when the cow first eats, the food is chewed and moistened just enough to swallow. When it is swallowed it goes into “room one”, the rumen. There, the bacteria get busy softening the food and fiber (called the cud) which is then sent back to the mouth where it is re-chewed, and chewed, and chewed, all the while being mixed with saliva which control the acidity of the food. That process is called chewing her cud. Cows actually chew their cud for about eight hours before once again swallowing it where it goes into “room two”, like a second stomach, but attached the first one. There the food is digested and the nutrients go where nutrients go to sustain life.
So now you may be saying “what’s that got to do with Scripture?”. I’ll make my answer short and sweet since, if you have read this far you may just be a bit bored by the detail of the cow’s digestive system that I presented. If we read the scripture like the cow chews its cud, I sense that we would get a whole lot more out of it than most of us probably do. For example–when we read scripture, do we really tend to chew on it for as long as we might in order to be still enough to hear what God might be saying to us through what we have read, or are we simply reading it because that is what we feel we should do as Christians? Let’s call that obligatory reading instead of cud reading. If we, in fact, cud read scripture and then swallow what we have chewed on for a longer period of time, might what we have read have a far greater chance of feeding our soul with the nutrients of what we have read as we slowly digest it because we have better prepared ourselves to let that happen?
I’ve been chewing on this as I have written it and I am seeing where I’m nowhere near the cud reader of scripture that I could be. How about you?