A journey of reading through the Bible (Devotional Stories of Reading Through the Bible: A Love of Journaling Series)
Over the past couple of days, I have shared how I am trying, again to read through the Bible cover to cover. I have shared some thoughts and stories about this endeavor.
I've been trying to do this for a week now and have read 2 chapters of the Bible so far.
Please read these blog posts first if you have not read them yet, for it will give you context as to what I am saying here. (Skip these if you want and begin to read past the links.). Just in case you want to get the most our of your reading experience... The previous blog posts to read are (I know it is a lot, I say with a cringe, but think it's necessary):
So after much frustration in trying to read Isaiah 1, and trying a few different ways/methods to do so, I decided to try just reading the Bible and taking time to stop and listen to hear what God had so say to me through the verses and chapter. Mind you, I journal the entire time as well.
Why do I journal, take notes, write prayers, and make good and well sure to write down whatever God says to me? I journal these things because will forget it otherwise. Also, journaling forces me to slow down and think and listen. Journaling helps me give more intentionality to being in the Word with God.
I did that yesterday and, well... Slowing reading, praying, thinking, and journaling through Isaiah 2 yesterday... Reading with intentionality... Taking time to listen to God... And reflecting in my journal every now and then about what I learned and what God and I discussed... I can say that I honestly say I have never had a day like that before in reading or studying the Holy Bible.
Yesterday might have been the most powerful and incredible day I have ever had in about three decades (the time I really started getting into the Bible).
I had no agenda. Nor did I have plans as I read a chapter of the Bible.
All I wanted to do was hang out with the Father and listen to hear what God had to say to me through the chapter.
That's it. That's all I wanted.
To be with God. In His Word.
I learned more than I have in a long, long time.
My spirit, mind, and heart were filled.
I knew I was getting a great deal out of the chapter as God and I were going through the chapter together.
I didn't use any Bible study methods, commentaries, study Bibles, Bible studies, etc. All I did was use my Bible and a concordance and also looked up the cross-references.
Here is the key that I think changed everything for me yesterday:
God kept telling me other verses as I went through that chapter. They seemed to kind of go with what He and I were discussing, so I went with it. I looked them all up and was glad to have a good concordance. Even as we did this, as He kept revealing verses to me that I wasn't sure had much to do with the chapter we were reading, I saw later how every verse went with the chapter and what He was showing me.
Looking up all the extra verses, being open to Him telling me verses, added to my Bible reading experience.
I got more out of that one chapter yesterday than I ever thought was possible.
And it was simply because I was silent and listened to what God had to say. And I wrote it down in my journal so I can review it and remember it later.
I cannot wait to see what we (God and I) do today in the next chapter.