Everyone who comes to me and hears my words and does them, I will show you what he is like: he is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when a flood arose, the stream broke against that house and could not shake it, because it had been well built. (Luke 6:47-48 ESV)
This is the second blog I am writing seeking to throw out practical ideas we might integrate in our lives as we seek to build our lives on the only sure foundation, the Word of Christ. I am also hoping to begin a dialogue, to get others involved in sharing their ideas, so be sure to post a reply with some things you have used to integrate Scripture in life. The first installment was focused on Jesus calling us to come to Jesus in hearing the Word. This blog will focus on hearing God’s Word, or the intake of Scripture. I will focus on some ideas in four areas of Bible intake, hearing the Word, reading the Word, studying the Word, and memorizing or meditating on the Word.
Hearing the Word
*Sermon notes is a good place to start. Come with pen and paper in hand, or write notes in margin of a Bible.
*As you come to a church service, arrive early enough that you can get in the worship room and prepare yourself for a few minutes for the time of worship.
*Find out the passage the pastor will preach on in advance and read the passage before you come so you are already prepared to hear him speak on this passage.
Reading the Word
*Create a rhythm – find a specific time in the day that best works for you to read Scripture every day.
*Have a plan, but make it your plan – For some, the goal might be to read the Bible in a year. Others may find that pace too fast and too much, so reading a chapter or so a day may
*Get an audio Bible – for many, the key excuse used to explain why they don’t read the Bible consistently is the issue of time. One way to combat this is to redeem your commute or time in a vehicle or to listen to Scripture. The Genesis App has in it’s ESV Bible platform the option of listening to the Bible, and there are other Apps that have this capability. Or there are many options for purchasing audio Bibles on MP3, CD, or other formats.
*Use a journaling Bible – This has been the best thing I have done in my own Bible reading in the last few years. I bought an ESV Journaling Bible and use it in my reading. Being able to journal allows me to think through the text, interact with it, and keep my thoughts in the Bible. It will also make a great gift of a legacy to my children at some point in time.
Studying the Word
*Pick a book of the Bible or major passage and make it a goal to study through that passage in a year or several months. Keep a notebook, get commentaries, and use a good study Bible to help you. Best study Bible is the ESV Study Bible, which can be bought at Amazon or from Genesis book table.
*Copy and paste a text from an online Bible and print it on a big piece of paper. Spend a week or two reading off the sheet, jotting notes, and focusing on specific words in the text.
*Get involved in a group Bible study. We have a great study for men on Tuesday mornings, 6:30 AM at the Eureka Breadco. Right now we are studying the book of Isaiah.
Meditating and Memorizing the Word
It is a very good discipline to hide God’s Word in our heart (Psalm 119:9). This can be done by thinking on one or two verses at a time and memorizing them.
*The key to memorization is repetition, so find ways to say the verse over and over again.
*Write out the verse on notecards and put them in places your eyes see often – Some possible places
- Bathroom mirror
- Space above steering console by the speedometer in the car
- Next to alarm clock
- Take a picture and save it as the wallpaper or start screen on your phone
- Put it in your back pocket and pull out often
*Memorize Scripture with a friend, practice together and hold each other accountable
*Parse the sentences in a verse or few verses
So there are a few ideas for Bible intake. Join the discussion and throw out some ideas of your own. Next one will be ideas for putting the Word of Christ into practice.