The Day I Stopped Reading My Bible

  • Daily Bible Reading
  • Daily Devotional
  • Write out the Scripture verse
  • Prayer
  • Lists list lists

Oh, the lists and marking through things that I’ve completed make me feel so accomplished.

Have you ever felt distant from God, even though you were doing all the “good Christian” things?

Maybe you feel like you’re doing all the right things, but God just seems to slip further and further away. 

I have. I was doing everything that a good Christian would do. I was giving to the poor, reading my Bible, praying, attending church services, and being kind; however, nothing made me feel close to God. I felt so far away from Him at this moment, even more distance had grown between us than I wanted to admit. I didn’t like the space that had grown between us but I felt like I was doing everything right. 

A Candid Conversation

I finally hit the wall – it was time to figure out what was holding me back in my relationship with God.

Then came the hard part – self-assessing. Not just saying you are doing everything right, but instead having that hard conversation with myself, the kind that pushes you and breaks your pride. 

God laid on my heart that my pride was holding me back. I wanted it to look like I had it all together so I could be a good Christian when, in reality, I was just checking things off the list. I was merely going through the motions, checking off my lists each day. I was doing some of the work, but my heart wasn’t in it. I was reading the Bible in chronological order last year again, but I wasn’t absorbing it, reflecting on it, or even challenging myself in the Word. I was just reading and checking that box for the day.

I Stopped Reading My Bible

At the start of the year, God laid on my heart to “draw near/closer” to Him. I decided it was time to stop reading my Bible. 

Instead, I started studying the Word, learning more, and seeking out answers. You can read all you want but unless you are studying, and using the knowledge, you are just reading a book. There is nothing wrong with reading for entertainment, I love reading. (Former Accelerated Reader Champion in the house!)  I also found that I had to focus on what I was studying.  If I didn’t, my eyes just saw the words and were reading through them quickly while I was thinking about my day, or what that person said to me last night that hurt my feelings, etc. I was thinking about anything and everything that wasn’t Bible-studying related.

To start my studying off this year, I went with an in-depth Bible Study of the book of Ezra. It was a random choice by a friend who had written the study.  I’d never spent a lot of time in Ezra and it wasn’t a book that I was as familiar with. 

Seeking Jesus Through His Word

I first sought out God each morning to meet me in His Word. After prayer, I started by finding the author of the passage (or who wrote the entire book), the time frame, and what was happening during this time in the world. Setting – where did it take place? I would then read roughly a chapter a day and summarize what was going on.

If you run into something you don’t understand or something that intrigues you more, seek out the answers. The internet can be a good resource but I would strongly caution you to watch the sites you use for information because there is inaccurate information out there. I like using these resources:

Seek out why that passage is important. 

Reflect on God’s purpose.

Lift it to Him in prayer.

I have also found that reading the passage in different versions and looking up things in my study Bible is beneficial to me to understand the passage better. 

The day I stopped just reading the Bible and started studying it became a game changer in growing my relationship with God. I had to learn who He is to know Him. 

I truly felt the tides turn and I was understanding and pursuing more in my relationship with God. Every time I read a passage, different parts or different words jump out at me. Digging deeper into my time spent with God and not just checking a task off the list, has grown me into a more intimate relationship with Christ.

What About You?

Will you join me today in digging deeper into the Word?

  1. What area is the hardest for you (understanding, seeking, reflecting)?
  2. What is your favorite Bible passage?
  3. How do you spend time in the Word?

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