Spiritual Growth: Bible Study (Volunteer Training Nugget #9)

Barbara Graves —  February 28, 2011

Bible study can be compared to food for your spirit. And just like there are a variety of ways to consume your food, there are a variety of ways to feed your spirit God’s Word. I can eat my breakfast in a bowl at my kitchen table or from a wrapper going through the nearest fast food drive-thru. I can eat 3 meals a day or 6 meals a day. The most important factor is that I eat and that I get the proper nutrition as I’m eating. A diet of only one type of food isn’t healthy. It may keep me alive, but I won’t thrive.

These same principles can be applied to “feeding” your spirit God’s Word. The Bible is filled with a variety of types of reading. There are books of inspiration and there are books of praise. There are books of history and there are books for the future. There are passages devoted totally to praising God and others totally to instructing man. The important principle is to balance what you are taking in.

These are some guidelines to consider about Bible study:

Find a version that you like.
If the version you are using is confusing or too difficult to understand, you probably won’t stick with reading it. There are quite a few good translations available as well as several paraphrases. Check out your local Christian book store for a good selection of different versions. Or ask a friend or pastor from your church about which version they would recommend.

Set a time to study.
Just like you set meal times, breakfast, lunch and dinner, set a time to read your Bible. Nothing’s to say you can’t vary times a bit. But it’s best to set a time aside to study and guard that time. Start with 30 minutes a day. From there you may find yourself adding a little extra time to the end because you don’t want to stop.

Find a plan.
Just like there are lots of versions, there are even more Bible reading plans. There’s even a Kidmin1124 reading plan. Many Bibles have a reading plan included. Youversion.com has several different types of reading plans. The advantage to a reading plan is it can ensure you get a variety of types of scripture.

Use a journal or notebook.
When you read, have something available to jot down notes. If you feel like God is speaking to you through a verse or series of verses that you read, write that down. If there is a scripture that gives you encouragement, jot that down as well. If you read something that doesn’t make sense, make a note of that too for further study on your own, or so you can ask someone more knowledgeable about it later.

Read and re-read.
It’s best to read an entire passage, maybe several chapters at once, all the way through to get the overall idea of the meaning of the writing. Then go back and re-read it slowly, to consider what each verse is saying completely.

Corporate Bible Study.
Join a group Bible Study at your church or in your community. There is much perspective to be shared when you study the Bible with fellow believers.

Barbara Graves

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Barbara is a married mother of 4 grown kids. She is the volunteer Children’s Pastor at Momentum Church in Woodstock, GA where she oversees kids from birth to 5th grade. She can often be found driving around north Georgia, usually with a cup of coffee in her hand.

2 responses to Spiritual Growth: Bible Study (Volunteer Training Nugget #9)

  1. Expanding on the “Read and re-read,” make sure you read the Bible in context.

    http://differentway4kids.blogspot.com/2010/11/how-to-read-bible-in-context.html

  2. Joey,
    Thanks for the comment and the link! You are right, reading the Bible in context is crucial. If we don’t, we can’t apply it correctly to our lives.