How to Enhance Your Time in the Word
Whether I’m living on a tour bus or catching flights, I’m almost always moving between churches and conferences with trips further afield. Changing time zones can be exhausting, but I’m thankful for a refreshing constant in my life. Reading the Word, keeping a journal, and prayer refresh me like a long drink from a cool fountain on a hot day.
We all live full lives. Maybe you’re working a full-time job on top of taking care of the children, or you’re possibly a student with countless tests to study for while keeping up with a work schedule and a social life. Whatever it is that occupies your days, I want to encourage you to always have that sacred space to convene with the Holy Spirit.
Many people feel burned out at the thought of spending time in the Word because they approach it in a way that doesn’t work for them. There isn’t a single method that works best for everyone, but God loves to work with our vastly different approaches, personalities, and seasons.
One popular structure is to read a daily chapter from the Old Testament, New Testament, Psalms, and Proverbs. If I tried that type of reading plan, I would fall so far behind and feel defeated—but it might do wonders for you! Studying the Bible topically rather than orderly is how I process things best. I also like to read out loud. It engages me because I have to slow down and not skip ahead. Different topics awaken for me in different seasons. When my kids were little, my Bible reading was mainly for survival. I clung to the book of James:
Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry. (James 1:19 NIV)
Now, I bounce around from book to book according to what areas in which I feel led to be strengthened, disciplined, enlightened, and filled with hope. For example, If I want to focus on what it looks like to have a prophetic anointing, I will camp in the book of Isaiah—specifically chapters forty through fifty. If I want to learn more about the end times, I will focus on the book of Revelation.
I’ve also found that if I only ever read one translation, my brain will default and I’ll lose some of my wonder with the Word of God. When this happens, I pick up a new translation so I can go back with fresh eyes and compare different versions. It always makes me aware of something I didn’t see before.
Regardless of your specific approach, it’s important to know the main goal in Bible study is not to prove we’re Christians, nor do we do it because we’re supposed to. Sure, holy habits will increase our spiritual lives, but our main goal shouldn’t be to get a message or to prove to God we’re doing our religious duty. Our main goal should be to know the heart of God more each day. Jesus was the Word made flesh. So when we read the Word, we meet Jesus.
Lovely one, I encourage you to spend time discovering what study method works for you. There are countless resources online that you can utilize for free study plans. Your time in the Word will never be the same. May you have a refreshing week discovering God’s heart through His written Word.
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