and you included some of your questions for me? What's that? You don't remember? Well, you probably don't because that was months ago and I'm just now getting around to answering some of those questions. Better late than never, right?
I truly did get some of the best questions and it will take several posts for me to say all that I need to say. This week I'm talking about my relationship with Christ, next week I'll be answering some questions about Ty and our relationship, and the week after that I'll be answering some more "intellectual" questions about Christianity. Your questions have really challenged me and I'm so ready to share my thought with you!
I had several questions that went along the lines of "How do you stay committed to studying the Bible?"
I really love that this question was asked a couple of times because it tells me how much YOU want to be dedicated to the Lord and His word. Thankful for friends like you who are constantly wanting to grow in their walks with Christ!
One of the biggest things that I have learned throughout my years as a Christian is that you have to carve out time for Christ. Yes, it's wonderful to spend some free minutes in between classes or on your lunch break reading the Bible and praying, but that shouldn't be your daily quiet time every day. Sure, you will have those days where you're running really late or the baby is sick and you'll have to do it at work, school, or when the baby is napping. There will always be "those days" because that is just life, but having a consistent time with Christ will do wonders in your relationship with Him.
This is where I feel like some of you are thinking, "But, doesn't it just get to be 'routine'? Aren't you just doing it because that's what you do everyday?"
Yes. There have been times in my relationship with Christ that I've gotten up in the morning and read my bible just because it was in my routine. Should it be that way? Of course not! Your relationship with Christ SHOULD be a part of your routine, but your heart should be focused during your time in the Word and you should always pray for an awakened heart. If you wake up in the morning with a desire to be in His Word and a longing to be in the middle of His will, the consistency of your relationship with him won't feel like it's "routine".
How exactly does this look for me?
I like to do my quiet time in the morning. I've always been an early bird so I enjoy getting up a little bit earlier to spend some time reading and praying with my coffee in hand. I naturally have a very anxious personality and I find that focusing my attention on the Lord first thing in the morning helps my anxiety to take a hike. I'm also a firm believer that you should always have a plan. Don't just pick out your bible and flip to a random spot in scripture! Pick up a bible study at your local bookstore or pick a book of the bible to read through. Right now I'm going through the book of Mark with Michaela and we read about 20 verses a day and then have a skype date on the weekends to discuss what we've been learning. That's another thing- have accountability! Talk to a friend about what you've been studying and ask her to keep you accountable to continuing on in your study. It's easy to fall away when you don't have people asking you what you've been reading. I've loved studying with Michaela because it keeps me in the word daily so that we can chat about it on the weekends. And when one of us starts to get behind we can encourage the other to pick back up and keep going. It's all about encouragement!
Studying before my skype date with Michaela a few weeks ago.
Another question I received was "What do you do when you lose the motivation?" This is a question that really had me thinking. My relationship with Christ isn't based on my feelings or how my day is going. My relationship with Christ is based on the grace and mercy that was poured out when Jesus gave His life for me on the cross. My relationship with Christ isn't about me. So when my relationship with Christ is starting to feel "dry", I try to remember that it isn't about my feelings or my emotions, but it is about what Christ has done for me. Even when I'm not motivated to be in His word, I study it anyway. His Word still has life and power even if I don't have goosebumps from reading it. I try to stay extra focused during my quiet time when I've been struggling with wanting to be in the word because I believe that the word of God can change our lives, even if we don't feel it emotionally in a moment. If you continue to read the bible and pray consistantly even when you don't "feel" like it, I believe that the Lord will refresh your spirit before it's all over with. Continue to have a heart focused on Him and talk to Him about your struggles. Pray through them. The Lord already knows, so you might as well talk to him about it and pray for a different mindset. Know that even though you might be going through a "dry" season, there are rich, full days with the Spirit in your future!
These are just a few thoughts that keep me walking on the right path in regards to my relationship with Jesus. These are the things that have helped me. What helps you in your walk with Christ? I'd love to hear it!