Spiritual Discipline: Reading & Studying God's Word - Pastor Andrew Hickman - August 28, 2018

      I am a part of a discussion group on Facebook called “Grace Habits: Spiritual Disciplines for
Ordinary People”. The purpose of this is to be a safe place to discuss one’s personal walk with
Christ with fellow Christ followers on topics centered on spiritual disciplines. I have been greatly encouraged by this group lately because of its charitable discussion around topics in Christianity that could easily become heated debates. I was challenged by one of the questions another pastor posted for discussion a few days ago. The question was this, “On a scale of 1-10, how well do you know the Bible? How do you think you could get to know it better?” Now, I feel like I have a pretty good knowledge of the Bible, but as I pondered the question, it hit me that I could know it so much better. That realization led me to challenge myself to read and study the Bible more and more.
        CONFESSION ALERT: I hate reading; I have always hated to read. I struggle sitting down to read anything, and it does not necessarily come from a lack of desire. I’ve always wanted to be able to be a reader, but it’s more of a frustration for me because I’m a very slow reader and my brain doesn’t process written words very fast either. My learning style is heavily kinesthetic, which means I learn through physical experiences rather than audible and visual learning styles. Anyhow, I challenged myself to take it slow at first to try and get a better grasp and understanding of what God is trying to teach me through His Word. So, I’ve started reading a chapter a day of the Bible, and my challenge was to read for understanding not reading for quantity; which for me means that sometimes I have to re-read portions or even the whole chapter in order to grasp what is being taught through the Scriptures.
        All of this is coming on the heels of something else I read in a book last week (yes, even though I hate reading, I am struggling my way very slowly through the book “Radical” by David Platt). In my reading Platt discusses how Christians all over the world who live in countries where owning a Bible is against the law, will study scriptures in house meetings hours upon hours at a time because they long for understanding and memorizing God’s Word. God was challenging me to read and study His Word with a renewed passion because I can do it freely without persecution yet I struggle to give God’s Word 10 minutes of my day. Yet persecuted Christians are literally risking their lives to read the Bible in other parts of the world.

I write all of this to ask you to take your “spiritual pulse” and ask yourself the following
questions:

  • On a scale of 1-10, how well do you know the Bible?
  • How do you think you could get to know it better?
  • What are you willing to do to improve your spiritual discipline of reading and studying the
  • Bible?

In Christ,
- Pastor Andrew