Do you ever doubt that the Bible contains God’s living Word? Do you feel as if you are reading ruts into it, gleaning the same things from the same passages time and time again? How can that signify a living message from God?
I would ask you the same question I ask myself: Are you sure you are reading a rut into God’s Word?
About midway through 2011 I joined my husband on his read-through-the-Bible plan. Obviously, he was already halfway through it, but I had just finished a plan I had been following for a couple of years, and I needed a new plan. I always work best with a plan. I figured it might be nice to join Doug, be where he was, and be able to discuss what we were reading. It did turn out to be a pleasant experience, and we have gone back through the plan again this year.
I have long written thoughts in my journal as I read. Often I refer to those journal entries for reminders, lessons, or blog posts. For the most part, though, I journal because writing thoughts down helps me remember them.
As I sat down to write this post, I started flipping through the journal I began early last November, looking for a bit of writing inspiration. I found myself reading entries from the same chapters I am reading now, so I pulled out my current journal to compare. Two things amazed me.
I still remember most of those thoughts and lessons from last year. I do not have the best memory, in all honesty. But those illuminations from God’s Word have stuck with me. And I have grown because of them. What an encouragement!
Even though I thought I was noticing the same old thing this year as I did last year, my journal entries prove otherwise. Most of this year’s entries do not even refer to the same verses as last year’s. Those that do highlight the same verses show very different thought processes.
God’s Word never, ever changes. Our circumstances, our environment, our maturity, and the lessons we are currently learning do change, though. As a result, the things the Holy Spirit guides us to glean from the Bible also change. God’s Word is alive!
If you ever think you are reading a rut into Scripture, gleaning nothing new, take this challenge. Find a reading plan and follow it for two years. I know that’s a long commitment, but it’s worth it! Journal your thoughts in the process, making sure to jot down the Scripture references (including the verses!) alongside your thoughts. At the end of the two years, make a little comparison of the journal entries from the two years. Not only will you see what you have learned and how it has impacted your growth, you will also see just how alive God’s Word has been in your life.
Okay, please know I’m not trying to sell, advertise, or push anything here – I do not get anything for including this tidbit. I just recently reviewed a book that might be helpful in this process. If you don’t really know how to journal or if you would simply like to see an example of someone else’s journaling, I would encourage you to pick up a book entitled Jacob:Journaling the Journey. (Note: It is geared toward women!) It is a great resource to help you learn how to journal through Scripture. For more information, a chance to win the book, or a $2 off coupon code, click the image below to read my review of the book.