You DO Have The Time

     My dad used to say, “If I had a nickel for every time someone said…..”, and he’d continue on with whatever it was that he thought folks said too often, assuming that he’d be a rich man if he’d been given a nickel every time he heard the statement.  I don’t know that I’d go quite as far as making that sort of assumption myself, but there is a statement I hear far too often.  “I don’t have time to read my Bible every day.”  Really?  Even if you don’t speak those words out loud, do you say them with your life?
     Last spring, almost exactly a year ago, a sweet friend of mine asked if I’d pray for her beloved Grandpa.  He was 96 years old and his health was failing.  He has since been called home for eternity.  Of course I said that I would pray, and I did; but the Lord used this situation to work out a few things in my life.  This gentleman was a believer and one of the few things my friend shared with me about him was the fact that he had been “Through the Bible with J. Vernon McGee” three times.  (This is an in depth Bible study that takes five years to complete!)  Every time I would pray for her grandfather, I would think about that statement.  His family knew he loved God’s Word.  They knew his commitment to studying God’s Word.  Something about that pricked my heart.  
     I began to consider my own time in the Word.  How much time did I really spend in God’s Word?  If I missed a day, did it bother me as much as it should have?  The one thing that bothered me the most was the amount of time I spent in His Word.  My time in the Word was so little in comparison to the many hours of my days. 
     I looked at a few “read the Bible through in a year” type plans.  I found one I liked that would take me through the Old Testament once and the New Testament twice in a year, and I started that.  I remembered that the theme of Dr. McGee’s radio program was How Firm a Foundation, and the first verse of that hymn ran through my brain over and over.

How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord,
Is laid for your faith in His excellent word!
What more can He say than to you He hath said—
To you who for refuge to Jesus have fled?

    
     God’s firm foundation is laid for my faith in His excellent Word.  What more can He say than what He has already said there?  I can be so dense!  When I find myself repeating something to one of my children for the umpteenth time, I need to remember how many times God needs to repeat Himself before I get it.  What I needed to do was to just spend more time in His Word.  I didn’t need a schedule.  I didn’t need a study booklet.  I needed only His Word.  And so it began.
     Just a couple of months ago, I listened to the audio book version of Ten P’s in a Pod.  The Pent family spent a great deal of time every day reading the Bible.  Each of them spent, depending on their age, 30 minutes to an hour reading their Bibles privately before breakfast.  Additionally, the family would read together for thirty minutes following almost every meal.  For the older children and adults, that meant 2 1/2 hours reading God’s Word every day!  Most of us would consider the amount of time they spent reading the Bible an impossibility in our lives.  I did. 
      Yet the Lord kept reminding me that He has laid a firm foundation for my faith in His Word.  Could I not spend more time each day shoring up my foundation?  Of course I could!   Hear me, now.  I do not spend 2 1/2 hours reading my Bible every day, but I do spend a great deal more time in His Word than I used to.  It’s done in thirty minute increments throughout my day, and what a blessing that has been in my life!!  I am so thankful that the Lord prompted my friend to ask me to pray for her grandfather, and that He used her words to bring all of this to fruition.  Little did she know that I would be the one to receive the benefit from her prayer request.  What an awesome God we serve!
     One thing I promise you, you do have the time!  I know you are busy, I’m busy, too.  Take a look at how you spend some of the thirty minute increments of your day.  Thirty minutes watching a tv show.  Thirty minutes on the computer.  Thirty minutes extra sleep by hitting the snooze button a couple of times in the morning.  Thirty minutes flipping through a magazine.  None of that is bad, of course, but the same thirty minutes might have been spent reading six to ten chapters in the Old Testament.  Thirty minutes is enough time for most readers to read eight to twelve chapters in the New Testament.  I’m not saying that there isn’t a need for a time of in depth study, but just reading through the Bible over and over again throughout your life will etch God’s Word onto your heart. 
     Imagine, if you will, that you spend just half an hour a day in the Old Testament and a half an hour a day in the New Testament.  In the course of just one year, the average reader can read through the Old Testament more than three times, and the New Testament at least a dozen times.  A dozen times!! 
     You do have the time.  It’s up to you how you use it.

God bless you as you look well to the ways of your household!
Proverbs 31:27
 

Be Sociable, Share!

12 comments to You DO Have The Time

  • Thanks for the great reminder.  I have been VERY lax in this aspect lately.  I will not MAKE time.  After all reading HIS word daily is a command… not just a suggestion.  

  • I have found this to be so true, Copperswife.  I always had good intentions to read my Bible, but by the end of the day I would find myself disappointed that I had not read anything in God’s Word.  This year I decided it would be different.  I wouldn’t read anything until I had read God’s Word, so that I would be sure to get it done.  At first, I would hurry through it, but as the months passed by, I found myself desiring to read it more and more.  Now I often read 6 chapters a day and am so excited about reading the New Testament twice this year.  I find my mind meditates on Scripture more often throughout my day, and that certain Scriptures come to mind more easily, probably because I have read them recently. 

     I used to wonder how other women developed a desire, a “thirst” for God’s Word.  Now I know.  It isn’t found in any blog, book, or other self-help whatever out there.  It’s simply reading God’s Word daily and being open to Him working in our life.  My biggest regret is not doing this years ago.  But, I know that whenever you start, the Lord will move and work in your life in ways you never imagined.

    Thank you for this post, Copperswife.  Sorry to leave such a lengthy reply, but I hope to spur others onto this treasure of spending time with the Lord.

    Love in Christ,

    Karen in Ohio

  • @KayBee1960 – You said ” I find my mind meditates on Scripture more
    often throughout my day, and that certain Scriptures come to mind more
    easily, probably because I have read them recently. ”  

          Yes!!!  Exactly!  And you’re so right about developing that “thirst” for His Word, too. 

  • Amen Cheryl!  The idea of having the Word of Christ dwell in me (and my little ones) richly (Colossians 3:16)… as opposed to being sprinkled on top has been running over and over in my head this week.  Thank you for this post.  It’s a real encouragement. 

    Love,
    Rebecca

  • I loved to hear J. Vernon McGee.  As soon as we’d hear that voice on the radio, my husband and I would smile and listen.  He sounds like such a backwoods preacher and then when you listen awhile, you realize how much wisdom there is.  Of all the years I listened to him, there were only a couple of things he said that disagreed with my own theology but nothing huge. 

    I found a Read Through the BIble Podcast for my itty bitty i-pod.  The only reason I didn’t keep up with it was because my i-Tunes wasn’t available when the big computer was in the shop.

    Great post, I needed to be reminded that I could use technology.

    It also reminds me of what Ruth Graham did when her kids were still at home. She’d prop her Bible on the kitchen counter and read as she went through her day.

  • Oooo I like what Brenda said about propping a Bible on the counter.

    Your post was right on! Yes, I personally DO have more time. A thirst and hunger for the Word of God is attained in spending time in His Word, but is also something God gives us if we ask for it. I have found if I am struggling to “remember” to read the Bible everyday, my thirst is not there. I have asked Him to give me one and He has!

  • Thank you for this post Mrs. L!
    I feel like you were writing to my exact need right now.
    I am going to get off here, and go have my bible reading time and prayer time.
    -Thank you again, for the reminder, it was much needed. (this post was such a blessing!)
    ~Lael

  • Thank you for this VERY timely post.  My bible reading has been less and less faithful in the last few weeks.  Sometimes I get so frustrated, and feel like I am not accomplishing anything.  But I just need to wait on the Lord and keep reading!

    I appreciate your wisdom.  Jeanette

  • thanks for the reminder…very well said…and very much needed for me!

    Alesha

  • Wonderful Post Cheryl. It is just affirmation to me. I just spent several days with lovely friends who have a 2 1/2 devotion time with reading of the word, singing, and prayer every morning. All their Children are extremely young like mine. Imagine my surprise!  It was wonderful to see the Little Ones think of the time as enjoyable and not drudgery too. ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for encouraging words to spend a little more time with the Lord each day.

  • Thank you, I needed to be reminded of that today. Thank you also Karen in Ohio for your comment.

    Blessings Gail