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If it isn’t clear by now, I’ll say it again — what got me through years and years of waiting, depression, and pity parties was the Word of God. I listened to expository preaching weekly and had frequent discussions with “older women” in the faith. I ate up passages that declared God’s faithfulness. I delved into study; I underlined; I cross-referenced; I journaled. I cried out to the Lord for understanding, and He answered me (Proverbs 2:1-8). While He didn’t rescue me immediately, the entire process took 10 years, He gave me peace in His scriptures that saw me through it. So this is my exhortation to you, Sister, read the bible. Study it. Know what it says. Find pleasure and peace in God our Father.
I was reading in Psalm 119 yesterday and was reminded of how the Word of God carries us through our afflictions. In his distress, the Psalmist cries,
25 My soul cleaves to the dust; revive me according to your word.
26 I have told of my ways, and you have answered me; teach me your statues.
28 My soul weeps because of grief; strengthen me according to your word.
38 Establish your word to your servant; as that which produces reverence for you.
49 Remember the word to your servant; in which you have made me hope.
50 This is my comfort in my affliction; that your word has revived me.
75 I know, O Lord, that your judgements are righteous; and that in faithfulness you have afflicted me.
81 My soul languishes for your salvation; I wait for your word.
89 Forever, O Lord, your word is settled in heaven.
90 Your faithfulness continues throughout all generations; You established the earth and it stands.
92 If your law had not been my delight, then I would have perished in my affliction.
103 How sweet are your words to my taste! Yes, sweeter than honey to my mouth!
105 Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
165 Those who love your law have great peace, and nothing causes them to stumble.
The psalmist clearly had great affliction and distress. Yet he found peace and hope as he studied the ordinances of God. The more He studied God’s word, the more He understood the God of heaven and loved His scriptures. I only gave you a few snippets to whet your appetite; I highly recommend you read the whole psalm and discover the beauty for yourself.
There is so much treasure to be found in a study of God’s word. It is through His word that he speaks to us and guides us. We may take to heart Paul’s commendation to Timothy, “All scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
My favorite way to study the bible is through my bible reading plan. Right now I am doing the M’Cheyne plan in my bible app, which allows me to read in several different areas at once. When my reading brings me to Leviticus, I am also in the Gospels, the Prophets, and the Epistles. I also really enjoyed doing a chronological plan. While reading the Kings, I may also be reading the Prophets, and while in Acts, I also may be reading the epistles that Paul wrote at the time. Reading in this way brings depth and dimension to the words on the page. New connections are made as I see how God and His character remain the same throughout scripture. I try and journal what I am learning as I read. I say ‘try’ because sometimes I get lazy :0 I may change my plan from year to year, but I cannot imagine going back to reading just one book at a time.
What’s your favorite way to read the bible?