“For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.” — Romans 15:4
If you are a Christian and neglect to your read your Bible, you are missing out. It is a book given to us straight from God. God, Himself, wrote the Bible for YOU and ME. The Bible is full of answers and wisdom to get us through each and everyday.
Don’t you want to know all of the secrets to life? Don’t you want to know what God has to say?
I believe Americans take the Bible for granted. Over in China, people are hiding the Bible and memorizing big parts of it, because it is illegal. Americans have all the access in the world to it, but majority of us are letting our Bibles become dust bunny homes.
I haven’t always been great about reading my Bible myself, but in the past couple of years, I have been getting better and better. So, I want to share some helpful tips to help you get the most out of your Bible reading.
Having a Bible Reading Plan
“Yes, if you call out for insight and raise your voice for understanding, if you seek it like silver and search for it as for hidden treasures, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God.” — Proverbs 2:3–5
I will always preach on going by a one year Bible reading plan.
I understand that we will have busy days, and we may not finish in exactly a year. The first time I did a reading plan, it took me three years to finish. My reading was obviously very spaced out, and I wasn’t getting much from it.
This time around I started in September to get myself ahead and to hopefully be able to finish in January.
It’s good to have a reading plan. This keeps track of where you are, and it may help you to stay more motivated to read a certain amount most days (or everyday).
The entire Bible was written with a purpose for us to use it as a tool. Even though we refer to the New Testament, the Old Testament is still there to teach us various things. People are constantly ripping apart and twisting the Bible out of context. We need all the context we can get to fight these absurd remarks.
“Open my eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of your law.” — Psalm 119:18
I am a huge believer in journaling while reading through the Bible. I write down key verses from chapters, verses that speak to me, and thoughts/questions.
There are some chapters/books that are a lot harder to follow (such as most of 1 and 2 Chronicles). For those chapters, I look up summaries and copy them down into my journal. This helps me understand the chapter in a very simple way.
Once I started journaling, I began noticing how much more eager I became to read. When you are able to follow what is being said better, it makes it all less overwhelming.
Since most of my readers are writers, I feel like this could be useful to many of you. For those who don’t like journaling/writing down thoughts, watching videos on chapters or on key concepts may be helpful after your finish your reading.
Bible Studies and Church
“For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” — Matthew 18:20
I went to various Bible studies in middle school, but I wouldn’t say I got a ton out of them. Once I graduated high school, I decided to drag one of my sisters around to find a good Bible study.
We found one, and I went every Wednesday for a couple of years. Once I started traveling with my husband, I wasn't able to go as much. Then, they moved churches, and I ended up traveling even more. I am currently not a part of one.
When I was going, we would always have in depth discussions going through whole books of the Bible. When I reread through those chapters of the Bible, the difference in my comprehension was insane.
With traveling, I also struggled with sticking with a church or going to church at all. More recently, I have been going to church with a friend here in TN. (If my husband isn’t working, he goes with me.) When I am back home without my husband in SC, I just go to my parents’ church.
Worship and learning about the Bible surrounded by other Christians is vital. Being in God’s house should be encouragement enough to run to church every Sunday, but it will also help you in your understanding of the Bible.
Reading Books on Topics Discussed in the Bible
“So that you may not be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.” — Hebrews 6:12
As much as I love being on my phone, I have a very short attention span. I can go through five apps in five minutes. I am not a fan of watching online sermons or lengthy videos on Bible topics. (If they are short, I will watch them.) It’s just not my thing.
With that being said, I have a much longer attention span for reading. It keeps me off of screens, and I love absorbing knowledge on different topics.
I read A LOT (usually a book a week). I love to read Christian-based books. I have noticed an increase in the amount of knowledge/understanding I gain from reading Christian-based books.
Books are a great tool for understanding the Bible, because someone is literally taking parts of the Bible and breaking them down for our understanding. Again, when I read through the chapters/stories discussed, I understand it all SO much better.
Here are some of my favorite Christian reads that I have read so far since the New Year:
- The Parables: Understanding What Jesus Meant by Gary Inrig
- The Power of a Praying Wife by Stormie Omartian
- Crazy Love by Francis Chan
- Twelve Extraordinary Women by John MacArthur
- Twelve Ordinary Men by John MacArthur
“For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” — Romans 6:23
In the end, just read your Bible, and do whatever helps YOU understand.
I can promise you one thing… The Bible is worth reading.
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