Don’t feed the bears.
I don’t know if you’ve picked up on a theme on this blog, but I thoroughly enjoy imparting a love for God’s Word to others. I have friends who were burned by bad church experiences or lengthy religion classes and have since left their Bibles on the same shelf since 1998.
I believe that you really can fall in love with God’s Word. We’ve discussed the importance of hiding verses in your heart, being able to combat lies with truth, and getting away for some true rest. If you find yourself reaching for anything but that big black book on your shelf, here are some of my own thoughts about picking up this habit.
1. It’s really hard to read a book if you don’t open it.
2. The Bible is composed of 66 individual books inside of one large books. These smaller books should be read just like any other book: start to finish. I don’t recommend the flip and point method OR the blinded flip and point method.
3. There are books within the Bible that you will connect with more than others. I love the History books in the Old Testament but I know lots of people who will gladly camp out in all the “ians” books in the New Testament. (Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians… etc.)
4. If you are looking for a place to start, I might recommend the four Gospels – the books with names you can pronounce. (Matthew, Mark, Luke & John.)
5. Make sure you have a translation that you can understand! If your Bible has gold pages and has multiple appearances by the word thee and thou that confuse you… you might want to find a new translation. I personally read from the NIV or New International Version. My husband reads from the ESV or English Standard Version. Other suggestions might be the NCV, NLT, NASB or even The Message.
6. Why not just get all your Biblical education from a Pastor or another book? Check out this quick film (that’s close to my heart) to make this very point.
The Bible is meant to be your guide, your food, and your sword. (Yeah. A weapon. Check out Ephesians 6.) It might be slow going at first, but the benefits will far outweigh the struggle! In 2001 I began to pray one prayer every night before I fell asleep: “Lord, let me love your Word.” I believe that’s a prayer God loves to answer.
“When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear your name, O Lord God Almighty.” Jeremiah 15:16
If you are already reading the Bible consistently, what made the change for you? What book of the Bible did you start with?
Happy Reading and Feeding!