What Kind of Bible Reader Are You?

Growing up, reading the Bible was like pulling teeth for me. I had trouble understanding the flowery language, staying engaged with the density of historical facts, and applying the truth to my relationship with Jesus. Have you ever felt the same way?

When I started college, I was determined to read the Bible for myself which I believe was a turning point in my spiritual journey. From then I’ve experimented with Scripture reading methods and have come to the conclusion that there are 5 types of Bible readers.

Which one are you?

The Readers

These people approach the Bible like a trilogy combined into one book. They will most likely use an easy version to read and their priority is to tackle each book from front to back. Entering into one book, they will read all the chapters before going onto the next. Each one completed is a small victory until the day finally comes where they’ll celebrate having finished the entire Bible.

The Artists

A trend has emerged known as “Journaling,” but instead of pens and highlighters, these maxresdefaultreaders decorate their Bibles with water colors and calligraphy. Special Bibles have been printed with wide margins and even coloring templates to encourage the process. Their priority is to tap into their artistic mind and meditate on one verse or passage at a time. While savoring the intricacies of Scripture, they result in aesthetically pleasing pictures.

The Writers

When these people pick up their Bible, they come armed with highlighters, pens, pencils, and maybe even a notebook. Similar to The Artists, they prefer a wide-margined Bible so they have plenty of room to take notes. Their goal is to interact with the text, and they do so by writing questions, comments, and applications. Their Bibles are covered with rainbow streaks of color, underlined words and phrases, and notes squished in every possible empty space.

The Students

Scholars who want to understand the depth of Biblical mysteries fall into this category. They open the Bible with the goal of diving into specific topics or issues and research everything they can find about it. The versions they use probably include commentary from the original Greek and Hebrew translations. Their findings help make connections, support beliefs, and gain a better understanding of God and His ways. The students may be the best and most thorough group and one that bleeds into the others.

The Collectors

You may assume the collectors have something to do with the many versions of Bibles this group collects, but instead, it’s actually something their Bible collects.

Dust.

The Collectors use their Bible when needed whether on Sunday mornings, Bible studies, or in desperate situations. The rest of the time Bibles sit on shelves or nightstands while dust sneaks onto their leather covers.
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I believe the Bible speaks to us in diverse ways. I believe His angels swarm around and minister to us as soon as we open the Scriptures. I believe that spiritual growth is stunted without consistent time in God’s Story.

The world will suffocate the life out of us, and even though we have the means, we choose not to take a breath of fresh air. Choose to breathe in the clean air of Jesus’s love, The Father’s presence, and The Holy Spirit’s truth daily.

Choose to be less like the Collector and more like the Student, but whatever group you fall under, take something away from the Word every time you read it. You never know when it may come in handy.

You are loved and Jesus wants a relationship with you even more than you with Him.
So who are you?

God bless!

-LJM

How to Succeed in College

As summer ebbs into cooler evenings, I braced myself for the seasonal change. Not only were pumpkin spice lattes on their way, but also were students heading back to school. I watched as my social media erupted with reuniting friends, cute dorm room pictures, and growing anticipation for the school year.

This season hits hard for us recent grads, and it makes us look back on those years that flashed by like a dream. So, after contemplating my four and a half years of school, I’d like to share with you just 3 essentials to having a successful college life whether you’re starting a new year like a veteran, or entering for the first time like a starry-eyed tourist.

1. Don’t Stress

The easiest college trap to fall into is the stressful one. I noticed a pattern: whether it’s the beginning, middle, or end of the semester you will hear this statement, “Well, it’s that time of the semester.” The phrase acts as an excuse to be stressed but the truth is, you will never get away from “that time.”

Yes, classes can be difficult, projects will all be due at the same time, and some tests will have more weight than others. You may be in several clubs that have events coming up, but you can choose to deal with all of the above with readiness or let it collapse on you like a ton of bricks.

How do you stay away from stress? Follow these rules religiously:

Pray, prepare, sleep, and trust God through the results.

2. Get involved

Nothing sucks the life out of college than doing nothing but going to class. Go to an event even if you don’t have anyone to go with. Find a club that you can be passionate about. My freshman year, I immediately auditioned for both the play and the glee club, where I could use my passion for performing. I met my closest friends the more I got involved.

If you’re not just starting out, maybe you could apply for a leadership position like RA (resident assistant) ,or president of a club, or mentor for incoming freshmen. All of these will help establish connections and help shape your level of responsibility as well as provide an outlet for creativity.

These are memories you will need to hold onto once you graduate.

3. Spend time with Jesus

This is the most essential because your relationship with Jesus influences every aspect of your life. College is where I had to take my faith into my own hands and hang on for dear life. Whether you’re at a Christian college or not, you are now an independent Christian and that means pursuing it for you and only you.

God uses college to test you in many ways. You will do a lot of growing during this time. Many college students pull away from the God they grew up knowing. I want to encourage you to take the time to grow closer to God. College will come and go, but He will be your constant.

Savor the independence, adhere to the call of responsibility, stand firm in your faith, discover who you are, and enjoy!

Did you takeaway anything different from your time in college? If you’re in school, what has worked for you? Please share in a comment!

God bless!

-LJM

James 4:8