How To Start Reading The Bible

Bible with notepad
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5 Things You Can Do To Get In The Habit Of Daily Bible Reading

Does the thought of reading the Bible daily overwhelm you? Have you tried in the past but set it aside because it didn’t make sense? 

Maybe all the begots and genealogy put you into a coma or you feared it would. Don’t let the Bible intimidate you. In this article, let’s talk about how to start reading the Bible in a way that actually helps us grow and connect with God on a deeper level.

Unless we unlearn what we thought we knew or what others said about Jesus we will stay distant by nibbling on left-overs.

How would it look if you came with fresh eyes to see and open ears to hear so you can comprehend what the Bible says to you, specifically you?

Dig and find out who Jesus says He is. What does He have to say to humanity, to his followers? Who will you say He is to you when you read the greatest story ever told?

Wad up the preconceived ideas you may have about rituals and rules. It’s never been about that, it’s about relationships.

 Living for him because we know him. When we do this, our roots go deep so the fruit can flourish high and wide. The result is living in the overflow of a relationship.

Knowing Him through his word and understanding how He sees us and what He desires for us becomes clear as we seek him.

Unfortunately, there have been some wrong teachings that hinder the gospel. God’s word is good news. Very good news. A radical shift from what religion teaches.

God always has been trying to get something to us, not prevent us from receiving from Him, but the key is It’s wrapped up in His word.

Start unpacking the beauty of God’s grace. The Bible is packed tight with some drama and stories that go from mind-blowing miraculous to downright dastardly with the way people act.

Come, sit at the feet of the one who did it all for you. Eat, drink the savor of God’s word. You may chew long and hard on some passages, wrestling through certain truths.

These are good signs as the word starts working within you.

Jesus, the one who promises to never let you go is in the process with you. When we feel faithless, He is faithful

He will never deny the one who is seeking to know Him. What a thrilling journey of highs and lows as we see life from his view. 

God loves to choose unlikely candidates to represent him. He calls those others would discard. He picks up the lowly, downtrodden forsaken ones. He sits with the one others have abandoned.

We see the extreme measures God uses for us to encounter his love and grace. It’s the greatest story ever told. Jesus is our King but you are the centerpiece in this story.

The God of the Bible is relentless in His pursuit of you. 

Right at this precise moment, God is drawing your heart with a desire to read his word.

Each person has their way and style they prefer. Some love Bible reading plans because it helps them stay on track as they check off the list for each particular day. They like a system. 

Others like to read the Bible like a love letter written directly to them. This would be my preferred method. 

There isn’t a right way or wrong way, it’s the one you will participate in that matters most. It’s the one you choose to do, this is the key.

Begin Praying for a Spiritual Hunger

Begin praying for a fresh hunger to know God deeper. Ask Him to draw you close to Him in His word. Ask him for the discipline it takes to give yourself and attention during that time.

Don’t be surprised if you immediately think of a million things you need to do. You might start having lists of tasks come to your mind when you sit down for your time with God.

 Grab a notepad and list the distracting things you need to do to get it off your mind.

Your mind will suspend the need to give it your attention because you have assigned it to a place, freeing your mind to re-focus.

The enemy wants to keep you distracted and preoccupied to keep you from God’s word. He hopes that you will find many things that need your attention more than reading the bible.

 He’ll convince you the other things are far more important and need your attention now. 

This is a definite tactic for the enemy to keep God’s word from being sown in your heart and transform your life with fresh knowledge about God and what the bible is saying to you. 

Pick a Specific Time and Place Daily

Morning time may be best if everyone else is asleep and you have uninterrupted time to think about what you’re reading, but it could be the late hours when you are most attentive. Whatever works for you. 

Beginning with a power hour in your day of reading God’s word, journaling what it is speaking to you will help you see what God might be saying to you or leading you towards. Ask God for conviction as you read. This conviction doesn’t have to have a negative connotation connected to it. A convicting word from the bible can be a convincing word from The Holy Spirit.

God is working that word within you so that it permeates your life. Being conformed to the image of Jesus is what we want. Transformation is a good goal.

As we settle into a place of consistently meeting with God we start becoming more familiar and sensing what The Lord is saying to us.

He opens our understanding with revelation as we chew on and meditate on His word. Our souls are no longer dry but are we being nourished with the sustenance of spiritual food. If our natural bodies need food, how much more do our spiritual bodies also need to be fed.

 Man does not live on bread alone but on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God. ( (Matthew 4:4) This isn’t being “overboard” spiritually any more than feeding your natural body would be accused of you “ taking this food thing too far.” We are spirit, soul, and body. They all need our attention and tending.

Pick a Translation You Understand.

Maybe the thee and thou make zero sense to you, so you close it up because it is intimidating. Does The King James version leave you scratching your head? 

Try the NIV. The ESV. The Message. It could be a children’s Bible. Download a Bible app.

 They are free and there are various translations to choose from so you can sample which one you connect with best. They have anything from devotionals to how to read the bible on the app. 

Remember, this concentrated time is about you and God. It’s about growing in understanding and being filled with the knowledge of God’s word. Try reading for depth instead of length. Here’s what I mean.

 Ask The Holy Spirit to give you an open heart and to be able to comprehend what you’re reading. Ask: What is this saying to me and how can I apply it to my life?

It’s not about blasting through a chapter, it’s about slowly digesting what the scripture is saying to your heart or circumstance. 

To discover what God is up to in your life and how you can know him better. It’s about you discovering him in the word for you, not what others tell you about him.

Start in the Gospels and Read some of the Stories

How can you relate to the story or the characters in the story? An example. When Jesus encounters Matthew, a tax collector.( Luke 5:27-32

A man everyone despised, but Jesus. He was despised because He extracted money from the people. Jesus comes along and sees what is happening below the surface in Matthew’s life. He needs healing. 

Matthew is intrigued as Jesus says, Follow me. Matthew’s filled with wonder and curiosity. I’m sure He wondered, Why would He ask me, a tax collector to follow him? He was brought out to be brought in. 

We can overlook the worth of a person’s life based on the history we have with them but Jesus knows the destiny He has in mind for them.

Matthew went from taking from others’ livelihood to serving a meal to Jesus plus gathering others to the feast He was serving. He went from scattering people when they saw him to gathering people.

Interesting isn’t it? The power of God can transform an unhealthy selfish person into a selfless servant.

As you read the stories ask The Holy Spirit to give you an open heart and to be able to comprehend what you’re reading.

Ask: What is this saying to me and how can I apply it to my life? 

How can you relate to the characters in the story? Have you ever felt like the disciples felt when they encountered Jesus?

How is this affecting the way I think about life? What’s going on in my head as I read God’s word? What thoughts surface?

How is this affecting my heart and the way I feel as I read these stories about Jesus and the disciples? How is my heart affected as I read about the miracles Jesus did?

How can I apply this to my life and live it out? If I put my hands to do these things how different would my life look? 

How different would my personal life look? How different would my business and co-workers look if I started seeing my life with the Kingdom of God working through me? 

Keep a notebook to record anything you may sense God speaking to you through the passages you have read. Right the date down and come back and see what God has been doing in your life

Refuse to Quit.

Here’s a big one. Refuse to quit because you miss a day or two. Life happens and we get off track. It happens to everyone. This is about getting to know God through his word. He’s not keeping a checklist on you.

It’s not about how you perform for God, it’s about knowing God intimately for yourself. Guard your heart and schedule against, “I’ll do it tomorrow.” Tomorrow can turn into the next day, and then the next day and on and on as we push it back to the end of our priority list.

Just hit re-start and pick it back up. Ask me how I know?

Don’t allow condemnation from the enemy or accusations to make you shrink back causing you to feel like a fraud. 

You are making progress, which is the reason the enemy will pull out all the stops to keep you from your alone time with God.

Maybe you’re stumped on some passages or have some questions you want to ask. Find your people. Dig for it first though. 

Get online and pull up different concordances. Be determined to gain understanding as you study out the passages. God will reward those who diligently seek him.

Some things must be mined out as you dig deeper. There are layers to some passages that Bible scholars have wrestled with and debated over for centuries. Move into the deep end.

People that have walked with God and are seasoned in their faith are a great resource for you. Find someone you can go to if you have difficulty understanding a passage

It might be a mentor, friend, Your Sunday School teacher, or your Pastor.

As you step into a newfound unfamiliar territory of how to start reading the bible daily may you cherish it.

May the word become to you a beacon of hope. May you realize you are salt and light. A reflection of his love as you live his word out loud. 

Taste and see that The Lord is good, friend. Never let go of the one who holds you tight even when you lose your grip on Him.

Michelle Lee Nolan

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