Never Meant to Stand Alone…

“Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might understand the things freely given us by God” (1 Cor. 2:12, ESV).

God never meant for the Scriptures to stand alone. We can only understand “the things freely given us by God” through His Spirit. Only His Spirit can open up to us the wonders concealed in His Word. When we do receive Holy Spirit’s empowering illumination, the Bible becomes an exquisite haven… a pasture thick with live-giving nourishment… a world of poetry, beauty, transformation… a land of enthralling action and daily discovery.

Now, I am not going to pretend that every single time I open the Good Book, I have an epiphany and soar on the heights. Although He surely gives me moments like those, there are other days when my intake of Scripture is more akin to eating a bowl of cereal. It provides the nutrients and fuel for the moment, but is not going to stick out in my memory forever afterwards.

My point is, I don’t want you to read my words and get down on yourself. If your own experience of Bible reading has not yet become alluring or riveting to you, don’t despair! The aim of this post is quite the opposite – I earnestly desire to encourage you. God is yearning to bring you into a richer, fuller experience of His Word.

My pertinent nugget for the day is simply this: Don’t try to conquer the Scriptures on your own. Holy Spirit is right there with you, bursting with excitement to take you on a new adventure with Him. Will you slip your hand in His and follow His leading? He’s yearning for your response to His invitation!

Before you even begin, shut your eyes as you sit with His precious book open in front of you. Engage the eyes of your heart, “looking to Jesus” (Heb. 12:2a). Purposefully ask Him to pour out His Spirit in, over, and through you as you dig into His words. Express to Him that you need Him to show you what He has buried there for your unearthing.

Then, as you begin to read, go slowly. Don’t rush past any of the sentences. Pause thoughtfully over each one, listening for what Holy Spirit might speak to you about it. When something jumps out, highlight or underline it. If an extra thought about what that verse means comes to your mind, jot it down in the margin. Ruminate over the passage you are exploring. Don’t stress over how much ground you will cover that day – if Holy Spirit is all over three verses, then just stay on those three verses. Let them go deeper and deeper and deeper into your spirit.

In an article I recently read, a brother shared that he buys a new Bible every year in lieu of a journal. As he delves into the Word each day, he does all his reflective writing there in the margins. I thought that was an intriguing idea. The important thing, though, is to experiment with different tools for quarrying the gold mine hidden within every chapter of the Scriptures. When you find an approach that comes alive for you, glom onto it and make it yours forever!

As for me, here is a picture of one of my Bible pages, just to share with you what it sometimes looks like when I get deep into my reading. I don’t cover every page with this many notes, but it was an extra inspired day on that occasion 😊:

Bible page

As you chew on all of this, I have one more thought for you. I know in my spirit that Holy Spirit wants to impress on your heart new truth today. He desires to show you how eager He is to reveal to you the beauty, the depths, and the power of the Scriptures He has written for you. He is brimming over with enthusiasm to become your personal tutor in His Word. Even now, He is whispering to these loving words to you: “Heaven’s kingdom realm is accessible, close enough to touch” (Matt. 10:7b, TPT).

Open up His captivating book, and dive in!

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Do you have any Bible-reading tips to share that have worked out really well for you? I’d love to hear about them in the comments!

14 thoughts on “Never Meant to Stand Alone…

  1. I love what you shared here Jennifer. It took me a while to get to the place where it was not about reading a certain amount a day but just allowing the Holy Spirit to open my eyes to the hidden nuggets in His word.

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  2. In your own style you provided a pretty accurate description of what Catholics call “Lectio Divina,” basically meaning prayerful reading. The one point I would offer is a focusing tool: read the words in a whispered voice. That way you’re more likely to remain alert to the verses and not drift off. God bless– Mike

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    1. I like that suggestion very much, Mike. Thank you! And you’re right. The times that I have done so, really have helped in that way. Lately I have been really utilizing the audio Bible feature on my favorite Bible app a lot, which has a similar effect for me. Something about hearing it at the same time as reading it is so helpful. 🙂

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  3. I know many of us have other devotions we read along with our Bibles. But I find that if I read in my Bible first, that I often stay there longer than if I pick up a devotional reading first. I always say too, that if someone new to reading doesn’t know where to start: book of JOHN or the Psalms. Isn’t that just like the WORD that is so captivating? Thanks for sharing your Bible page with us too!

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    1. Those are some great pointers, Maxine! Thank you! And yes, I got to a point where I had to really reduce my consumption of other devotions in order to increase my actualy Bible consumption. That’s really an important suggestion, I’m thankful you brought it up, along with your other great insights. And you are truly welcome! Much love to you in Jesus today! ❤ 🙂

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    1. Thank you so much Sophia! I’m having trouble viewing it, which is often a difficulty I have with our jungle Internet speeds. Hopefully it will work for me soon. But no doubt someone will see it who needed to! Many blessings to you with much love! ❤

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  4. As far as Bible reading, I enjoyed following a chronological Bible reading plan. This put Scripture in a whole new light for me. Now I know what order the events in the Bible occurred. Some sections of the Bible make more sense when I have just read what happened prior to.

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