You wake up early, pour yourself some coffee, and find a spot on the couch or at the kitchen table. You open up your Bible and read it. After you finish reading it, you struggle to understand the meaning of what you read or what difference it will make in your day. A few hours later you can’t even remember what you read at all.
Does this experience sound familiar to you?
Unfortunately, many Christians encounter something like this too often. Perhaps through an inspiring sermon or an encouraging friend, they are freshly motivated to read the Bible. However, when their time is dry and forgettable, this motivation doesn’t last long.
How can you get more out of your daily time in God’s Word? How can you leave each day with multiple takeaways from this important time? Here are three daily objectives that will help you!
Aim to leave your quiet time every day having learned something that you did not know before. This may be a more academic party of your Bible reading, but it is important. Paul’s encouragement to his young protégé in 2 Timothy 2:15 should challenge us as well. He says, “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth.”
If you are a new Christian, I would highly recommend that you purchase a good study Bible. The helpful notes in a resource like this will help you answer any basic or common questions about a passage. (If you want to buy one, I would recommend The ESV Study Bible or The MacArthur Study Bible as excellent!) If you have been a Christian for longer and have read through the Bible several times, this may take more digging and work. Remember that God’s Word is called “more precious than gold.” What investment could possibly be more valuable than this?
If you’re leaving your time in the Bible each day without being filled with praise and wonder for the God who wrote it, you’re doing it wrong. Consider what David says in Psalm 27:4 – “One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple.” When we open our Bibles every day, our hearts should be saying, “I want to gaze upon the beauty of God!”
Ask questions like this as you read:
- What is this passage telling me about what God is like?
- What is this passage telling me about what God has done?
- Is this passage telling me anything about the promises of God?
- Is this passage telling me anything about the good news of salvation?
Worship God in response to these questions.
Spending time in God’s Word should change the way we live. James 1:22 says, “But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.” Make this your goal. After you have read, learned, and worshipped, ask yourself this question: What difference is this going to make in my life today? Maybe there is a sin you need to repent of. Perhaps you have an attitude that needs to change. There might be someone you need to reach out to, encourage, or pray for. Be as specific as you can be as you seek to apply what you read to your upcoming day.
As you think about these three objectives, maybe you will find it helpful to write some of these things down in a journal or on a card to carry with you throughout the day. I pray these objectives will help you to get more out of your time in God’s Word and inspire you to dig in deeper and more often.