These are some of the things I’ve discovered that will help get you motivated and inspired to get the most out of your time in the Bible.
Life can be so busy and there is rarely any time when there is no noise. Finding time to spend in the Bible can be hard, but it’s necessary. I’m learning that if I don’t intentionally pick a time to get alone with God, it doesn’t happen and yet another day goes by with no time in the Bible. The longer it gets, the harder I find it is to get back into reading and studying my Bible. But the truth is, it’s important and we as Christians need to be spending regular time in the Bible as it is supposed to be our very source of life. Matthew 4 says that we don’t live on bread alone, but on every word that comes out of the mouth of God. Well, all scripture is God breathed (2 Timothy 3:16),and came out of His mouth and so we need to be eating off it regularly.
There is just something about removing all the noise and it just being you, your Bible and the Holy Spirit. Even Jesus needed time out away from the hustle and bustle of life. Many times in scripture you see Him taking time out and going up on a mountain to be alone and pray. If Jesus needed time alone with God then so do we. Be intentional and make time in the word.
This has helped me tremendously. Years ago, every time I would start reading the Bible, I would fall asleep within minutes if not seconds. This used to frustrate me to no end and I would often be left feeling guilty that I hadn’t read my Bible. It finally dawned on me to pray before I started reading. I prayed for eyes to see and ears to hear what God was saying to me, I prayed that God would make the scriptures come alive and feed my spirit while I read. Do you know what began to happen? The Bible started making sense and I stopped falling asleep. This is so simple and yet something I overlooked for years and the results have been so profound.
Now this might sound a little strange but it’s a big key. The Bible says faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God (Romans 10:17). So if I want to grow in faith I need to be hearing the word of God more regularly, in my own ears. It didn’t say faith comes by reading, it said it comes by hearing, so I make a point to read out loud when I read my Bible. This way not only am I seeing the words but I’m hearing the word and feeding my faith. Jesus also said that, His words are spirit and they are life (John 6:63), so when I speak His words out of my mouth they bring life to my spirit. I try make it a habit to read the Bible out loud. I can testify from experience that it works to fuel and feed your faith, especially when you are feeling dry and don’t feel like reading.
The Bible is a sacred text but the paper it is printed on isn’t. So many people I meet don’t write in their Bible because it’s Holy. Yes I agree it’s Holy, but it is also food to your mind and spirit, and food is meant to be consumed. I have so many Bibles all over the house. All of them are filled with Highlights, ruler marks, writing, notes and thoughts, from the times I’ve fed on the word. For me, writing in my Bible helps me connect the dots and has made a huge difference in my ability to digest and consume the word. This way when God shows me something in Scripture I write it down, right there in the scripture so I never forget it. It is there as a constant reminder that God spoke to me, every time I open up to that scripture. When I read what I wrote, I’m reminded of what God said and I can meditate on it again and again. I have found that if I don’t write down the revelation God gives me where I can easily find it, I forget it and it never takes root in my life and subsequently never bears fruit in my life. Let me set you free, get a wide margin Bible and write in it.
While studying themes, characters, or books of the Bible is very helpful, don’t be scared to go on a rabbit trail with the Holy Spirit. So often I start out studying a particular person or subject, when I suddenly see something in the scriptures that I have never seen before. Often what I see is completely unrelated to what I’m studying at the time and there is a temptation to refocus and go back to what I’ve actually set out to study. However I have discovered that throwing away the structure and following these things God reveals to me, leads to some of the most exciting times in scripture. These rabbit trails have unlocked some amazing revelation to me and God has used them to profoundly speak to me through His word during these times. So have a structure but don’t be afraid to go where the Holy Spirit is leading.
These are some of the things that have helped me get into the Bible, particularly during the spiritual dry seasons of my life. I pray that they would help and encourage you too.
Lots of love
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Byron is also the author of Testimonies of a Good God, a story of struggle and yet great victory in Jesus. More details of the book can be found below. Living in Victory