When life gets hard, it's easy to slip into discouragement and start thinking, “I know He loves other people, but does God love ME personally? Is it really true? Does God love me unconditionally?” Even though we know in our brains that God loves us, sometimes it's hard to feel that in our hearts. The only way to have an absolute assurance of God's love is to read, read, read the Bible!
Why It's Hard to Read the Bible
As a busy mom, it can be so hard to find time to study (or even just read) the Word of God. When we're first starting out the Bible can be hard to understand. It takes discipline to make consistent Bible reading a priority. We miss a day here, miss a day there and before we know it, skipping our daily time with God has become a regular habit and we're running on empty.
The result is chaos. Chaos in our soul, chaos in our homes and chaos in the church. The devil knows it and he will do whatever he can to keep us from the word of God. He'll tell us we're too busy… not smart enough to understand…. too tired…Because he knows that as soon as we start spending daily time in God's word we will find the weapons of our warfare and we will be strengthened to resist his temptations.
It's not just busy moms who struggle with this. It's almost everybody.
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Earlier today I had an interesting chat with Pastor Jim. I was asking him why there is so much controversy and confusion over a certain doctrinal issue. His answer was this:
[Our denomination] is pragmatic. We find the largest battles first. Within our own congregations we are fighting a battle just to have people decide to read the Bible. [The controversy] is a result of a problem. It is not the first problem. We are losing the battle with the first problem [lack of Bible reading] right now and the secondary problem [the doctrine] has taken a backseat
Did you catch that? WHAATTT???? If we're not reading the Bible, what are we doing, Christians?
If we're not reading the Bible, how can we expect to know God? How can we expect to know His will for our lives?
The good news is…. if you struggle with daily Bible reading, you're not alone. Not by a long shot. And the other good news is this:
The first step to having an amazing Christian experience is simply making the decision to open your Bible and then doing it.
“Does God Love Me Personally?” 30 Day Bible Journaling Challenge
That first step of actually opening the Bible is the hardest. Satan doesn't want us spending time in God's word and he will do whatever he can to trip us up.
Over the next 30 days, I'd like to invite you on a Bible Journaling Challenge with me. I want you to KNOW how very much God loves you, so each morning for the next 30 days I will send you an email that shares a Bible passage about how much God loves you. I won't be sending the typical verses we think of. John 3:16 is not on the list, because many of us know that one. I want to introduce you to some Bible verses that you may not have seen before, that will encourage you and help you know what a precious child of the King you really are.
Sign up by filling your information in the box below. This is a free challenge that will be delivered by email. It will not be published on the blog. Even if you're already receiving my emails, you need to sign up for this specific list to get the emails. So please take a moment to enter your information here. You'll be taken immediately to my Bible Coloring Chart Bookmark (my free gift to you) and you'll get a welcome email from me. Then, on the following day you'll get your first Bible Reading Assignment. This is an ongoing Bible Journaling Challenge and you can join any time!
When I wrote How To Be Amazing At Bible Journaling, Even if You’re Not An Artist I was amazed at the response! So many of you wrote to me sharing stories of how Satan has been working overtime trying to keep you away from your Bible. Over 900 of you joined my Bible Journaling For Non Artists Facebook Group. It’s clear that I can’t just drop that article on my blog and leave it. We are a community. We are here to encourage and uplift each other. Come join the group. Take thee challenge. Meet other like-minded moms and know that you have a community.
Preparing for this “Does God Love Me Personally?” Bible Journaling Challenge
There are no requirements. You can read as much or as little as you like. If you miss a day, just join in with us the next day. If you are a talented artist or like to doodle, that's great. If you prefer highlighting and taking notes, you'll be in good company (that's me!). This is not a race or a competition. The point is to develop the habit of daily Bible reading, to enjoy our time with God and really come to an understanding of how very much He loves each and every one of us.
There are a few things you can do to set yourself up for success:
- Gather your supplies. You'll need your Bible and you might want to have some paper and pens to record your thoughts.
- Have a special place for reading. You might have a small house without enough room for an entire area dedicated to a prayer closet, but know where you will be comfortable and least likely to be disturbed while you read. If it's winter I like to sit near the fire place. In the spring and summer I enjoy sitting out on the porch overlooking the orchard.
- What would make this time with God extra-pleasant… something that you'll look forward to each morning? This is such a personal thing. I like to wear my coziest bathrobe and drink my favorite herbal tea in a pretty mug while I'm reading. What would make your quiet time with God extra special?
- Oh. And if you're like me and there's no way you're going to wake up before the children without help… make sure you have a good alarm clock!
Here are some items that will help you set yourself up for success in your new devotional habit. They're not necessary, but they sure are nice!
If you're on Facebook, come share what you're learning in our Bible Journaling For Non Artists group. On Social Media, please use the hashtag #BibleJournalingChallenge and #BibleJournalingForNonArtists and feel free to tag me (GoodOldDaysAtHome).
I can't wait to get started! I hope you'll join me!