That’s right. I don’t always WANT to read my Bible. So now, I’ve said it!
Sometimes I have too much to do.
Sometimes I’m just plain lazy.
And sometimes a yucky feeling clouds my judgement and I just don’t want to do it!
As a matter of fact, I haven’t always loved reading the Bible.
But I read the Bible anyway-
Because I loved God.
I wanted to know God and I realized I would never, ever know Him unless I read His love letter to me.
I remember so well trying to develop the Bible reading habit.
I was young.
I was hungry for God.
I was hungry for love.
I needed Him.
So, I pursued Him by forming a discipline of Bible reading.
Part of my pursuit was ignited because I belonged to a Wednesday night girl’s program that encouraged Bible reading. I couldn’t earn the badges without finshing the required reading. So I read. I went to the library and checked out the Bible on records. (Now the cat’s out of the bag; you really know that I’m not just old…I’m ancient.) And yes, it’s much easier these days to form a daily Bible reading habit. (Is there someone in your life that you can partner with to make you accountable for reading the Bible on a regular basis?)
The more I read, the more I wanted to read, because I fell in love with the Scriptures. David said (I know everyone doesn’t agree that David wrote Psalms 119, but many of us do. Charles Spurgeon for one.) “I obey your statutes, for I love them greatly”. Psalms 119:167
I have learned.
- Make reading the Bible a holy discipline. Do it even if you don’t want to. You don’t always want to brush your teeth, but I sure hope you do it anyway! There are benefits you know. Fresh breath. Healthy Teeth. And there are benefits that come with reading the Bible, even if you don’t realize it at the time.
- Ask God to speak to you personally as you read the Bible.
- Realize you can change what you love.
You can change what you love! Really?
My dad grew beets in his garden under the power lines a few blocks from our house. A mason jar of ruby colored, pickled beets sat on the table at almost every meal.
I felt like royalty in my seat at the table beside my dad. I watched as my daddy would jab the fork into the tall quart jar of beets and plop them on his plate. Then he would jab the fork back into the jar and say, “Want some?”
I would wrinkle my nose and shake my head no. I thought they tasted nasty.
He grinned and encouraged me, “Try it. You’ll like ’em.”
But I didn’t like them and he knew I didn’t. Tiny beads of sweat dripped onto the table, forming a wet ring on the plastic table cloth under the icy cold beets. He repeated his offer, by extending the fork with a single beet on the end, “You’ll like it.”
He loved beets and wanted me to love them too. I looked at the leathery hand offering me a treat he absolutely loved. I nodded. He raked the single red circle into my plate.
I didn’t like the smell of vinegar or the earthy, sour concoction, but I ate it. I ate it because I loved him. I loved that he wanted me to love the things he loved, so I ate the beet. I shivered, but I didn’t gag. I swallowed. I smiled, but I didn’t like it.
It’s funny, but my daddy wasn’t content for me to just taste the beets. He offered those beets every time we had dinner. So again and again a beet would find its way onto my plate, until I developed an appetite for them.
I opened a can just yesterday. Maybe that’s why you’re reading my story. Now I absolutely love them!
I’ve discovered that reading the Bible is like that.
Sometimes we simply don’t have a desire or an appetite to read the Bible.
Eat it anyway.
Make it a discipline.
Set a time, a place and get a plan.
Read a verse.
Read a chapter or get on a Bible reading plan to read the Bible through in a year.
Whatever works for you…but read it!
Ask God to help you love the Bible.
You’ll never know God if you don’t read the Bible. He wants you to know Him. He wants you to love Him more. The more you know Him, the more you’ll love Him. And while I don’t always enjoy the discipline, I love the benefits!
And please don’t forget to share! I’m convinced you have a friend that needs to develop the Bible Reading Habit!