Shift Your Perspective on How Bible Study Looks
I think there are many wrong mindsets that can bog us down. I'm battling some of them even now. I know the truth, but trying to get myself to believe it by living it is proving to be a challenge.
At the same time, I want to be careful I'm not throwing out the wheat with the chaff. While I know some things are toxic, some really just require a bit of priority shift and discipline.
Disciplines are important, but not at the expense of a heartfelt relationship with Christ.
We need to understand our motives. If our motive is solely duty, we will dread our time in the Word, or never do it.
However, it is important to understand we are called to obedience and staying in the Word is an act of obedience as well as an act of the will. Having a discipline is simply a tool to help us remain in the Word. It is very easy to allow our time with God to slip away day after day if we haven't set up a specific plan of action to read.
It is so important to understand how disciplines work, though. They won't all look identical. There is no law written that you absolutely have to do your quiet time with God in the morning. I have definitely found benefits in doing this, but truth be told, not every season will allow for it. And it's a legalistic notion if one thinks that's the only time to meet with God.
Some people thrive just as well in the evenings as others do in the mornings. Some can only find a quiet moment during nap time during the afternoon.
Which leads to my next point.
There is no set time to be in the Word or prayer.
Something is always better then nothing and a small study or concentration on a verse can really pack a punch. The reason I love Thirty Days of Bible Study for Busy Mamas is because it's about a 5 minute per day study and it really packs a punch. You study an entire chapter for a whole month. You really dig into it a little everyday and it has to be the best Bible study in 5 minutes I have ever come across. I can use this study as a guide for future studies of my own.
The goal is to be fed, not spend a certain amount of time reading everyday. Anybody can read for an hour and not take a thing away from their time in the Word. That's not our goal.
But here's the thing...
While we don't want to be legalistic about spending time in the Word -- how we do it, when we do it, or where we do it -- we cannot neglect our time either and be lazy or complacent about it. We still must do it. Not out of duty, but out of necessity. Consistently avoiding or neglecting our quiet time will soon prove disastrous.
Think of your house. It doesn't matter when you clean, just so long as you are cleaning. It doesn't matter what system you set up or how you clean, as long as you're using a system and truly working it. When you stop cleaning and fail to use the system, the house will slowly become quite messy and chaotic. It will be noisy and become cluttered. It will be harder to find things, and keep the dirt up when there is stuff all over. You will find it's harder to walk because there are items all over the floor.
So it is with our mind and spirit when we neglect them. Our mind becomes cluttered with worldly thinking and it will be harder to find the Truths we once read. We must read continually to keep our hearts filled with Truth; to defeat the lies of the enemy and of the world; to have a clear path to walk down that is not littered with garbage, making the path unclear.
Don't mistake legalism for lifeline. You don't have to read one chapter a day if you want to read more or focus on less. And if you miss a day, don't consider it "falling behind". Just pick up where you left off and keep going. If you feel like "catching up," go for it! But don't feel obligated to read double just to catch up. Soak in His word, don't merely read it.
What lies are you battling regarding your own need to be in God's word?
Read Bible Study for Moms Part 1 here.
"We all know we need to be in the Word, but sometimes we don't know where to start or who to study with. Let's start out by simply gathering our tools and making a commitment to try our best."