Do you ever change up your Bible study routine? Sometimes, I have to do something different to set a new pace in my time with God.
It’s like dating. When my husband and I get in the dinner/Netflix/ice-cream-on-the-couch rut, we get a little disillusioned on why date night matters. However, even secular social science tells us that date nights are crucial to a couple’s relationship. In order to maintain healthy romance, we need to keep things fresh: take a drive through the mountain, hop restaurants for different meal courses, or snag take-out and play pool at the local community college center.
The same is true in our relationship with God. Like a stale date-night routine, time spent with Jesus can feel uninteresting or unappealing sometimes. We need to introduce something new and fresh to rediscover why we love Jesus so much (and to remember what His love feels like again!).
I’m guessing you already know the basics: get rid of distractions (shut up, social media!), have your Bible handy, make time for prayer, journaling, and worship, etc. I’m suggesting we break through the boredom and regain a bit of excitement in our spiritual lives!
Here are 5 ideas to add spark to your Bible study routine:
Be Less Quiet!
The phrase “quiet time” is not specifically found in Scripture. Sometimes I get so antsy being calm and quiet that I give up. I’d rather change things up to connect with Jesus than constantly skirt around my relationship with Him because I don’t want to fail that quiet time test.
1. Turn up worship music and sing along.
2. Read the Bible out loud. Louder if you have to silence the mental distractions.
3. Take a walk and yell about your hurt or frustrations. God is big, he can handle yelling:
Come and hear, all you who fear God; let me tell you what he has done for me.
I cried out to him with my mouth; his praise was on my tongue. Psalms 66:16-17
Find Stillness through Motion
Stillness is imperative to listening. If we want to hear from God, we need to shut down our own mental narratives, our constant need to perform, and our penchant for busyness, even in our own bodies. For me, I arrive at stillness best after moving my body:
4. Stretch or do a Flow routine
5. Get your cardio on before meditating on God’s Word
6. Pray (listening and speaking) while doing the dishes or pulling weeds
7. Go for a drive while listening to Scripture audio or being quiet
He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” Psalm 46:10
Location, Location, Location
New horizons are not just metaphorical. My husband and I do not just connect emotionally or physically in our relationship, but also locationally by exploring new places. We can also add spark with Jesus by interacting with Him in a new space:
8. Read your Bible in a closet with a flashlight, like the underground church.
9. Take your prayer life to the mall (there are a lot of people to pray for there!)
10. Hike your way through listening to Psalms.
11. Journal in an ugly alley way. Sketch the filth of your sin, repent, and thank Jesus for grace.
I love those who love me,
and those who seek me find me. Proverbs 8:17
Remember, It’s a Big Table
As Americans, we often get stuck in the script of individualism. The Bible was written with a community in mind. Maybe we can start approaching our devotions that way. It is not a sin to replace your daily individual quiet time with a corporate one. God must be thrilled when he sees his children getting along and seeking His presence together, not just on a Sunday morning.
12. Read the Bible aloud with your roommate or spouse before a meal.
13. Meet daily with friends before work to pray. Coffee not necessary.
14. Listen to podcasts of Biblical preaching with your work out buddy.
15. Write a letter to someone else about how God has impacted your life.
Until I come, devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to preaching and to teaching. 1 Timothy 4:13
I will unpack #15 in my next post. Until then, cheers to a bit more enthusiasm in our Bible studying.