What a precious gift we have in God’s Word! To think that God speaks directly to me through His Word is a treasure beyond what my mind can imagine. I love to gain insights and write them down for reference in the future. I delight in hearing, reading, studying, memorizing and meditating on Scripture. Learning Scripture over the past five decades has become a delight to my soul. But, there are times of dryness when I can’t conjure up a fresh insight to meditate on throughout the day. At times like that I feel as though I operate out of duty rather than delight. During one of those times recently I took a couple of weeks to delve into Psalm 119. It was helpful to ponder and meditate on the ways the Bible is described as well as how it impacts me. This study gave a fresh perspective for my wilted soul and brought hope and encouragement.
Some of the verses that almost jumped off of the pages were:
- “If your law had not been my delight, I would have perished in my affliction.” Ps. 119:92
- “The sum of your word is truth, and every one of your righteous rules endures forever.” Ps.119:160
- “I long for your salvation, O Lord, and your law is my delight.” Ps. 119:174
In Psalm 119 the Bible is described as the Word, law, testimonies, rules, wondrous works, precepts, commandments, righteous rules, promise and statues. In studying the Bible it becomes our delight, comfort, hope, peace, safety and hiding place, among many other things.
Before children I could enjoy extended time with the Lord without being interrupted. And now that my sons are grown I can do so again. But, I remember being a mom of little boys and thinking it was a good day if I got my teeth brushed and my clothes changed! Don’t get me wrong, I loved being a mom of littles and counted it a privilege to have to wrestle through this issue. I often felt guilty for not getting time alone with God as I had in the past. I believe that God understands and that He does not desire that we heap shame and guilt on our own heads when this happens. The question we need to address in every season is:
“How can I grow as a woman of the Word given my current realities?”
In 2 Timothy 2:15 Paul admonishes us to, “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.” And 2 Timothy 3:16,17 goes on to say, “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man (woman) of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.”
My encouragement is to make it a priority to get regular intake of the Word of God in any way possible! One Bible centered practice we enjoyed when our sons were growing up, and still do regularly alone or with others, is to pray through Scripture. We select a passage (usually a Psalm) and read a verse, then pray. We would say, “Dad will start with verse 1, Mom verse 2, etc.” Each person would read their verse and then pray about what was in the verse. Then the next person would take their turn. If desired, there was freedom to go back to a verse or have multiple people pray about one verse. This brought structure to our time in the Word and also served to teach our children how to interact with the Bible through prayer. Praying through scripture also helped us grow stronger in our Bible knowledge and bolstered our prayer lives to a whole new level. Psalms 84, 86, 96, are great Psalms to start with for children.
Here are some other ideas I have found helpful for increasing my intake of the Word of God:
- Listen to the Bible! Download an app that speaks the Bible. I love listening, pausing, rewinding etc. I can listen and still fold laundry, make dinner etc.
- Place verse cards over the kitchen sink or in strategic places you see often- fridge, bathroom, your diaper bag/purse etc.
- Listen to podcasts of Scripture or sermons.
- Put on worship music that is Scripture based so that your home is filled with the Word of God in praise.
- Memorize Scripture with your family. As your children learn, you can also memorize and meditate on God’s Word. (See the post on Christ the Center for ideas).
- Get time away from home to meet with the Lord. (Or have someone take your children away from the house so that you can be alone!) Set an appointment for time alone with God, without your children. Ask your husband to commit to being with your precious ones. Or, trade times with another mom allowing one of you to get away while the other stays with the children. Maybe a staff person could come and enjoy your children while you take some time with the Lord. While it might take some serious creativity, it will be worth it for you to be refreshed by consistent time away.
Truly, we need to have regular intake of the Word of God if we are going to pass our love for Him and His Word along to others. As we influence others, we cannot give what we don’t have stored in our hearts. The Prophet Jeremiah exclaimed, “Your words were found, and I ate them, and your words became to me a joy and the delight of my heart, for I am called by your name, O Lord, God of hosts.” (Jeremiah 15:16) I’m praying that the Word of God will increasingly be “a joy and the delight” of your heart. The Lord dearly loves you and He takes great delight in you as He has called you by His name!