All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work. (II Timothy 3:16-17, New Living Translation)
According to a report released this summer by the Barna Group and the American Bible Society, daily Bible reading dropped from fourteen percent to nine percent between 2019 and 2020. That’s quite a percentage change in just one year. Apparently, as the coronavirus pandemic separated us from fellow believers in attending church, we have also allowed it to separate us from God’s Word. I would have thought the opposite.
Daily Bible reading is more than just a nice habit. It is an appointment with my Friend, a time when I learn more about Him. It’s also a time when I learn more about myself. As I read, God’s Word not only teaches me, prepares me, and equips me, it also corrects me. It reveals any wrong attitudes, actions, or desires in my life. It also shows me how to live in a way that pleases God. That’s why I need to set aside time every day to dig deeper into His Word.
Everyone has their own special way of studying Scripture, and you no doubt have yours. Yes, I keep a chart that helps me to track my progress as I read through the Bible, but I don’t confine myself to just that chart. I explore as I read. I make sure I have pen and paper to jot notes (or questions). I also keep a highlighter handy. If a portion seems fuzzy and I’m not quite sure what it means, I may read it again—and perhaps even again. I may check a Bible app to see how it reads in another translation or what a commentary may say. If a word or phrase “jumps out” while reading or if something seems unfamiliar, I will stop to look up the meaning. I even use those maps included in the back of some Bibles.
Here are just a few things we can do to make our Bible journey more meaningful and enjoyable.
- Start with prayer that God will open your eyes to the lessons He would have you learn today.
- Look at the setting of the passage. Who wrote it? Who was it written to? Why did he write it? What type of writing is it?
- What is the main emphasis of the passage?
- How does it relate to today’s world?
- How does it relate to my life personally?
Reading God’s Word is not a chore; it’s an adventure. If you are in the ninety-one percent instead of the nine percent, I encourage you to become part of this adventure. Just devoting a few minutes in the Word each day will encourage and strengthen you. Don’t be afraid to ask questions or just tell God if you don’t understand something. He gifted us this amazing Book so we can learn more about Him and the plan He has for each of our lives. That’s exciting!
“Open thou mine eyes that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law.” (Psalm 119:18)
Lord, increase my love for Your Word. Help me to dig deeper into its meaning and show me how I can apply its principles in my life today. You left me a great treasure when You gave me Your Word, and I cherish it.