Foreword:

Ever wonder what God might have to say to YOU today? Here are things to ponder, and things to receive into your heart. If you have a question, put it in the comments. I respond as much as I can.

A note for all my readers: I've been experimenting with YouTube videos for Bible teaching for a while, and I'm working through Revelation here. My YouTube videos are currently short studies in Matthew, and at present I'm posting videos on Revelation as well. Both appear on the blog, which is turning into a Vlog. I encourage you to subscribe to my YouTube channel for better coverage.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Read your Bible and Pray

"Your Word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light for my path...Blessed is the man...[whose] delight is in the [word] of the LORD...I will meditate in your statutes...your commands are always with me, and make me wiser than my enemies...I have more insight than all my teachers, for I meditate in your [word]...study to show yourself approved to God, a workman who doesn't need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth...from your childhood, you have known the holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise unto salvation...The Bereans were more noble than the people of Thessalonica, because they searched the Scriptures daily..."
The Bible is a huge part of the strength of your spiritual life.  Reading it is immensely important. Meditating on it (thinking about its implications) may be even more important.  Many of my friends read devotional books (that's good!) Many of my friends go to Bible studies (that's good!), many attend church regularly (that's good, too!), but the strongest among them spiritually are always those who read their Bibles every day, and meditate on the words they find in them. This is really a plea.  Read your Bible every day.  You can gain more strength in 5 minutes of Bible reading than you can in a whole week of listening to sermons.  "I don't understand the Bible," you say.  No, you can't understand it all. Nobody does. The Bible is full of mystery, it was written in a different culture, and in an unfamiliar language, then translated for us.  However, much of it is universal, and in much of it is something you can use for your life today.  It's like finding fruit on a tree.  You have to learn to ignore the leaves.  You may find a use for them later, but when you are first starting (even if you've believed for many years), you need to focus on whatever means something to you.  Here are some recommendations for your 5 minutes with God, just listening to what He has to say to you in the Bible.
Here are some sections of the Bible that are easier to learn, and have special meaning:
Psalms.
Proverbs.
Matthew, Mark, Luke, John.
Acts.
The stories (Genesis, parts of Exodus, the books of Samuel and Kings, Ezra, Nehemiah, and Esther, Daniel (some of it is very mysterious).
Skip the hard stuff.  You can come back to it later if you want.  For now, go with the parts you can understand, and there are lots of those. 
If you can't understand the Bible you have, get one you can understand. Just go to a bookstore and look at them.  
The thing is, God wants to talk to you, if you want to listen. A large part of listening is spending some time with the Bible.  
A few years back, I gave a Bible to a co-worker. She really wanted it.  However, she wanted it as a possession, not as something she read.  I didn't mind the gift, but she never read it, so it was really a useless possession and did her no good. That's what the Bible is to you, if all you do is look at the cover from time to time, and carry it with you to church.
5 minutes.  Just 5 minutes. Only 5 minutes. 5 minutes. You can do this!! Read your Bible and Pray.  Listen to God. Talk to God.  He wants to talk to you.  If you will do this, your life will change more than if you listen to a hundred years of sermons. Sermons are men (sometimes women) talking about God to you.  God wants to talk to you direct.  He wants to speak to you.  
"Speak, Lord, for your servant hears" was what Samuel the prophet said when he first heard God's voice. You do the same, and God WILL speak to you.