It’s more than language; more than grammar and punctuation on sheets of paper. It is more than history and poetry, deeper than narrative. It’s not just a collection of books and letters.
The Word is connection. A place to meet with God. It is a place to gaze into His eyes and begin understanding yourself.
Studying the word can at first seem daunting. The verbiage and expressions can appear confusing. Perhaps like me even, the Word was used to poke and stab at you, making it not only confusing – but scary. I get it. I really do.
But The Word was meant for you.
At my darkest moment I desperately wanted to run from it, maybe even run it over with my car. But in a last ditch effort I decided to open the word one last time seeking either confirmation of the pain I felt OR maybe just maybe, a salve of truth.
I found truth. Even more — Hope. Healing. (Here’s more of that story.)
So I want to challenge you today – pick up your Bible, not because it’s a “you should”, but because there is something in those pages just for you.
It all starts with a question. Any question, really. Any thought that worries you, intrigues you. Any situation you have faced in the past or are currently facing – start there.
What does the Bible say about ____? You fill in the blank.
That word you just filled in – use that word to search your Bible’s concordance (usually in the back of the Bible or in a separate book like: “The Strongs Exhaustive Concordance”). Or you can plug that same word into a search engine online. If you use Google or the like- be sure to put it in a phrase like: “scriptures about ____.” Or use an online Bible like biblegateway.com or biblehub.com.
Read the verses that come up. Also, read the few verses around them. And then listen. The answer you seek is there. Let the words wash over not just your mind- but your heart. Follow the questions that surface in that first reading. Like “what does ___ mean?” Or “wait, what happened to ____ that made him/her say that?”
Then- journal what you find!
For me, I journal right there in the margins of my bible like this:
Don’t be afraid to mark up the book. If it helps you to be present in His word- by all means- color, draw, write!! Put the date in there, jot down notes, even write out the questions you are asking. Sometimes God reveals the answer later as layers of the message are uncovered. Highlight what sticks out, draw a picture of what is speaking to you.
I dare you to dive in, whole-heartedly, open mindedly. You just might be amazed.
If you don’t have a journaling Bible and want one- leave me a comment below (make sure you are reading this post on it’s own page- click the post’s title if you don’t see a comment box below) and I’ll enter your name in a drawing to WIN this stunning New King James Journaling Bible.
It’s a Red Letter Version with beautiful lined margins for journaling, doodling … anything! It will be a definite heirloom for generations to come!!