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sweeter than honey: finding the time and motivation for time with God

Hey!

With new seasons come new routines and I know, I know, sometimes Bible study can get pushed aside. Some common reasons that happens is nobody has time, they feel bored, or they feel unmotivated. How can we get excited about it again? Everyone has times where life feels scattered and Bible study just seems difficult, but let’s look at how to fix that! It also helps to cut some roses from the flowerbed to add some happy to the kitchen table where you study!



Make it fun. To me, this means add color! I love fun sharpie type felt pens that don’t bleed through thin pages and using lots of colors to help my notes stand out. Some people draw or use stickers to help verses stand out. Whatever creative ways you come up with are going to really help you personally learn and remember what you read as God teaches you. These are the fun pencils I keep handy at my desk ready for drawing and writing.





Use something pretty and fun. Since I am a huge notetaker, which helps me concentrate when studying or listening to a speaker, I discovered note taking Bibles! Yes, they really have lines in the margins for notes or doodling illustrations! I love this! I am not too much of an artist as far as drawing, but I can do a few doodles and I can definitely write some notes! Colored pencils work great for this and add so much to Bible study! Here is mine I keep at my desk.




Don’t be afraid to write IN you Bible. I know, some people really freak when it comes to writing in a Bible. To me, it is how I have learned that I learn best over the years. Many people use notebooks to write down what they want to remember, but I know myself and I will never go back to a notebook to enjoy and remember notes I have taken. In elementary school, I had a shoebox full of old bulletins with my sermon notes on them but I dumped them after a while, because after so long, they would begin to take over the closet! I have found that taking notes in the margins really helps me remember and is always there when I open my Bible. I have two Bibles I use - one to teach with and one to keep at home that I use to study each morning. Having two helps keep room to continue to write! Here is a page out of my own Bible.




Find accountability. Do you have a friend who can ask you how your time with God is coming? Maybe someone you know wants to stay connected to the Lord too and has a difficult time sticking with it. Be bold and ASK! Join up and encourage each other to stay in the Word each day and stay at it, even if a day is missed.


Find a study you can follow. It is much easier when there is a plan right in front of you ready to go each day instead of randomly opening the Bible and pointing to a verse, which I know we have all done! I have mentioned a few recently, including Kelly Minter’s Living Room Series for ladies, Bible Express for preteens. I just began the Kristi Mclelland study called Jesus and Women and really look forward to learning about Jesus in the context of His culture and time period. You can find it here



This week, my girls received their very first devotion from church! They grinned from ear to ear as they brought their very own devotional magazines into the church service after LifeGroup. They were able to look at them during the service and get excited to read the exciting articles and enjoy the colorful illustrations that make Bible reading and time with God extra fun!


You can find the More devotional magazine for ages 4-7 here

You can find the Adventure devotional magazine for ages 7- 10 here


I had to mention this amazing resource! I told them they could choose a special time of day to spend time with God, whether in the morning, at rest time in the afternoon, or whenever they would like. Even kids at four can benefit from looking at their very own devotion! Monday morning, our first day of school, Ella Kate brought all three devotion books downstairs for them to read before breakfast! One girl chose to read in the tent, one chose a spot in the living room, and one chose to spread out beside the tent. Ella Kate gets comfy for her quiet time, apparently!



Pick at time that fits in your life. Life changes and different times call for different ways to spend time with God! College students may have late classes and have plenty of time to leisurely read in the morning. As a college girl, my best time was in the afternoon after classes and before practices, since I was up by 6 a.m. each weekday to lift weights or run for track or cheerleading. No way could I get up earlier than that! Some ladies are functional in the middle of the night, and they enjoy spending time reading their Bibles or listening to God’s Word on a podcast and praying in the middle of the night while taking care of infants. I am not a fun or nice person in the middle of the night, so this is not an option for me, but for some it is a cherished time with God, when most of the house is dark and quiet and they have time to listen for God to speak. Right now, I read in the morning before little people wake up, at least that is the goal. Some days are amazing and some days, I barely get started before someone interrupts my idyllic time on the patio while the sun rises. So life goes. It is helpful to remember that God knows our hearts and intentions and understands interruptions. He knows when people work third shift jobs and take time on their commute to and from work. Praise God for His patience and understanding!


School started in my house this week, which adds another interesting layer of activity and makes it even more challenging to fit in my own quiet time throughout the day! We can do this together, though! How and when do you get to spend time with God? Whatever works for you, each time you open His Word, always ask the Lord to help you understand and remember His Word is sweeter than honey (Psalm 19:10)!


After the gym and shower Tuesday night, my oldest, who is super pumped about school this year, told me she was probably going to write her spelling list seat work during the morning minutes she was spending in her devotional magazine. Even at eight years old, we are so tempted to cram other stuff into time with God! I did not want to come down on her, so we just had a discussion about it. I want her to continue to tell me her thoughts and feelings and also, I want her to come to her own conclusion to spend time with God since she needs to own her relationship with God. I asked her questions such as why she would need to and if she feels like that would be the best time to catch up on spelling. Cool conversation, really, and I hope she begins to see the desperate need we have for God and begins to choose the sweet time spent with God.

Hugs, Charis




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