Does your bible study routine have you scrambling?
Bible study is a crucial part of the Christian’s walk. While it’s true the scriptures give us an account of how we should live our lives as Christ-followers, it’s more than a book of commands. God’s word provides us with the opportunity to know Him better and connect with him more intimately.
The only problem is that most of us struggle to find the time to read His word. Our families, households, jobs, and everything else on our plates—planned or unplanned—keeps us busy, making it difficult to set aside time for personal Bible study. So most of us are too busy to find the time to study or consumed by the things going on in our lives that we can’t remember to find the time to open our bibles.
We can’t stop life from happening; it will always press for our attention. And we can’t create more minutes in our days. So even if we said no to a few activities, cleared our schedules, and set a designated time to meet with God in His word every day, unexpected things would still come up–they always do!
However, if we’re proactive about it and prepare in advance for the instances that prevent us from studying God’s word, we are more likely to open our bibles. We can do this by putting reminders in place that encourage us to spend time with God in His word. Implementing things into our environment–where we live our lives–will help us remember to get in the Bible when life gets crazy. Then, with only a little planning, we’ll be on our way to cultivating a more intimate relationship with God and creating better bible study habits.
Here are ten ways we can proactively develop better bible study habits:
ASK GOD FOR HELP
Who better to seek assistance from than our heavenly father when we need help? Psalm 34:17 says, “When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears and delivers them out of all their troubles.” God hears us when we call to him, and he is our help in our time of need. It’s not easy to start a new routine, especially one that requires us to carve time out of our already chaotic schedules. Tell God what’s on your heart and ask Him to aid you in developing better bible-study habits. Asking God to help you open your bible more may seem trivial but remember, God cares about the little things just as much as the big things, and he will help you if you ask him.
KEEP YOUR BIBLE VISIBLE
I’m sure we’ve all heard the saying, “Out of sight, out of mind.” It’s easy to forget about something if we keep it locked away. However, we will readily recall something that we often observe. If I can see my Bible, I am more likely to pick it up and read it than I would if I kept it in a drawer. Try to keep your Bible out in the open, preferably in a location you walk by frequently, like the kitchen counter or coffee table. If you have more than one Bible, try placing all of them around the house as additional reminders. Having your Bible handy and in plain sight will remind you to open it and read it.
SET AN ALARM
Everyone’s got some sort of electronic gadget nearby these days. Most of these devices have alarms built into them, so it’s easier than ever to remind ourselves of what we need to do and remember. Try setting your alarm to go off every morning–and noon and night if you need to–as a reminder to get in the word. I like to use the calendar app on my phone to set up reminders. It allows me to set up the alarm’s time and day, and I can even set it to go off every day if needed.
If you need additional motivation, try typing in a line or two of encouragement in the title or notes section when setting your alarm. Something as simple as: “Time to get in the Word–you can do this!” might be just the push you need to open your Bible.
HANDWRITE A NOTE TO YOURSELF
Consider bringing back the art of an old-fashioned handwritten letter. Chances are you have a pad of sticky notes tucked away in one of your desk drawers. Dig them out and write a couple of mini-signs reminding yourself to open your Bible and read the word. Once you’ve made your signs, place your reminders in places where you’ll often see them on the bathroom mirror, your kitchen cabinets, your laptop, and the visor in your car. These self-encouraging messages will serve as reminders to take a break, get your Bible, and soak up the word.
USE SCRIPTURE CARDS
Scripture cards are perfect for grabbing on those days when you know you aren’t going to be able to sneak away to spend time in the word. You can buy a premade set from the store or make them yourself. If you want to make them yourself, grab some note cards and markers and jot down some of your favorite verses. You could even write down memory verses from your current bible study. Scripture cards are a great way to get into God’s word quickly, so be sure to keep them close by.
RECRUIT AN ACCOUNTABILITY PARTNER
Research shows we are less successful at attaining our goals if we try to do it alone. Accountability partners can provide the support we need to help us meet goals and overcome obstacles by lovingly encouraging us along the way. Do you know someone that will keep you accountable? Reach out to a friend or family member, tell them you want to spend more time studying the scriptures and ask them to periodically check in with you to see how you’re doing. It can be a text, email, or phone call, whatever works best for both of you. Every time you hear from them, it will encourage you to stay in the word and develop regular study habits. If you don’t have a good report to give them, don’t be too tough on yourself–it takes time to establish a new routine.
FIND A MENTOR
Spending time with a mentor can be an invaluable source as they can share valuable tips and provide encouragement to cultivate better habits.
Do you know someone that has excellent bible study skills? Ask them if they would be willing to mentor you—most people love to share their knowledge with others! If the first person you ask says no, don’t fret. Ask someone else—God will lead you to the right person.
DOWNLOAD A BIBLE STUDY APP
There are dozens of Biblically-based apps available to download on your phone and tablet. You can choose to receive daily updates with most of them–which works as the perfect reminder to get in the word. My favorite Bible app is the You Version Bible App, but there are several good ones available. I would try out several of them and pick the one that works best for you.
Some of the available Apps have bible studies you can participate in. First5 is one of my favorites!
USE SOCIAL MEDIA AS A BIBLE STUDY TOOL
We all do it. We hop on our phones, intending to check social media for only a minute, and before we know it, thirty minutes have passed, and we’re now running behind.
While we may not all spend 30 minutes on social media every time we get on our phone, most of us can admit to checking it at least a few minutes every day to see what’s going on with our family and friends. If we’re going to spend time on social media, why not fill our feeds with things that encourage us to get in God’s word.
Is there a favorite Christian author, ministry, or Pastor that has encouraged you to grow in your walk with Christ? Most Christian leaders have at least one social media outlet that allows you to connect with them. Try following their social media accounts for some scripturally based news feed encouragement.
You could also join a Facebook Group; thousands of Christian groups are available for you to participate in on Facebook. Facebook group posts will show up in your news feed, so it’s essential to choose a group with posts that encourage us to seek God’s word every day. I recommend giving several groups a try until you find the right one (or few) that work best.
Online Bible studies are also available on social media. Rather than having to be present at a specified time, these studies allow us to participate via email and social media on our timetable. By signing up for an online bible study, you’ll get virtual reminders to get in the word. Plus, you’ll be able to discuss the study material with other online attendees.
SET REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS
Our attitude and state of mind can directly affect our bible study routine. If we set our expectations too high, we are more likely to get frustrated and give up. Don’t be too hard on yourself; there will be days when you cannot get into God’s word, and that’s okay. Give yourself grace. The goal isn’t to be the perfect bible-study girl. Our goal is to proactively establish things in our lives so that we are encouraged to spend more time with God by reading his word.
Life will always be busy. We will never be able to control every situation or add more time to our days. We can, however, get intentional about our bible study habits and find ways to remind ourselves to spend time in the Bible. By taking measures to make God’s word a part of our everyday surroundings and routines, we’re more likely to take a few moments out of our busy schedules to spend time with God and read his word. Then, rather than scrambling to squeeze God’s word into our busy lives, we’ll be better prepared when life thwarts our study plans.
I hope you found these tips helpful. Do you have a bible tip you want to share that helps keep you on track? I would love to hear it.
Thank you for joining,